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Sierra Nevada Stout - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada StoutSierra Nevada Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,388 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,388
Hads: 3,196
Avg: 4.07
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 286
Gots: 384 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-14-2000

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,388 | Hads: 3,196
Photo of PaleAlien2
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Smells bready and malty. Better go get a knife and fork for this bad boy.

A good dry stout. It's very crisp and finished quite bitter. Has a smoky flavor almost like a porter. The mouthfeel is surprisingly thin though for a stout.

Not one of my favorites but decent.

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Photo of bskrtz
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle served cold in frosted pint glass

A) Very dark, even black with short mahogany head that settlesfast

S) Cooked dark fruit, chocolate, mild spice

T) Smooth and drinkable. This is a mild stout with a hint of espresso, burnt chocolate and molasses

M) A bit thinner than it's famous Irish cousins. Ample carbonation and mild esthers. Mild bitter aftertaste

O) A good example of classic stout

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Photo of nasty15108
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A - Poured dark brown/black with slight reddish hues. The pour produced a foamy tan head with plenty of sticky lacing throughout.

S - Roasted malts with hints of bitter chocolate.

T - Slightly sweet at first with hints of smokey burnt espresso. Finished very bitter with some hints of alcohol.

MF&D - I found it to be fairly thin for a stout. Coats the mouth decently but leaves a very bitter aftertaste. Worth a try.

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Photo of bobhits
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours fairly light brown for a stout, but turns black as expected. A watery brown light shows around the edges. Not much head to speak of here. Less than 30 seconds it is more or less gone.

Sweet vanilla, a slight dark chocolate,

Burnt, sweet, then bitter hops. A bready and dark fruity finish that's pretty darn nice. I think part of this sweet flavor is perhaps an odd sweet coffee like flavor and then enhanced with some earthy hops. All this while being sweetened by the malt. I have to say this is a darn good stout. After having been fully unimpressed with Samuel Smith, I'm glad Sierra is here to make things right!

Just carbonated enough in the mouth, just enough body, damn well made stout. Most stouts are either imperial sippers or they lack the sipper qualities needed to enjoy and savor a stout. Unless you find stouts refreshing summer beers...well this is just ideal.

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Photo of CortexBomb
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out nearly pitch into a pint, but you can still see light through it if you hold it up. Surprisingly large amount of head for a stout.

Scent is mainly dominated by a nutty aroma while the flavour is a strong burnt yet creamy malt taste with a goodly amount of bitterness that comes on late and then lasts for quite some time.

Mouthfeel is decent, lighter than I'd like, and very carbonated, yet it still has a bit of thickness to it. Drinkability is high though because the creamy flavour manages to tone the intense stouty-ness down a tad.

Overall a decent stout, and slightly unique because of the creamy factor.

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Photo of alcstradamus
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A--Pours a very dark brown that highlights red when held up to the light. You can get pretty much as much of the tan head as you want with this depending on the pour. Good lacing

S--Smells sweeter than most stouts, but it is a very pleasant hoppy sweetness...unfortunately its pretty much the only scent I get

T--Creamy malts and a nicely balanced hoppy bitterness. No bold flavors present but that is not what this beer is trying to be

M--Coats the mouth in oily goodness

D--This would be a great session stout but not much else. So it scores high for "volume" but low for "desire"

Good overall stout, probably a great introductory stout to get people used to the style but its not something I want to come back to after exploring the rest of what the world has to offer. Still, this is fairly widespread distribution and is definitely worth trying for those who have not done so.

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Photo of BB1313
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours almost black, but there's light getting through with brown hues; small tan head that fades and leaves nice retention and solid lacing. The aromas are loaded with smoke and cocoa malts. Subtle hints of black coffee. The flavors are pretty bold. Very roasty. Dark chocolate and subtle coffee notes are there. Some vanilla bean. Some subtle anise/black licorice notes in the mix. More smoke. Earthy and bitter. Not much hop flavor, but there's definitely a hop bitterness to this one. Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium-bodied. Carbonation is very active and spritzy. Very smooth and finishes dry for the most part.

It was nice to see this beer relatively fresh. It's a very solid stout.

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Photo of BeerEndevour14
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good generic tasting stout accompanied by a bold cocoa/sugar flavor. This beer is backed by strong hop character and pours nice with a thick dark head. I personally think the malt character is perfect but could see another tasters dissatisfaction with the roasted malt backbone. Also prefer it served at a lower temperature (approximately 44F) than other stout beers, perhaps because of the low-moderate alcohol content.

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Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Almost black with a thick light khaki head. Tons o' lace.

Aroma is roasty and earthy with a touch of sweetness.

Taste is the same. A little more burnt, slight bitterness, chocolate.

Smooth and medium bodied with mild carbonation.

Comes across as pretty basic but solid nonetheless.

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Photo of cooter
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: small-bubbled mocha head, black body, slow but visible carbonation.

Smells: Hops, cherry, chocolate.

Somewhat creamy, with coffee bitters towards the end and chocolate undertones throughout. Some oversweetness in the aftertaste. Mellow. Sharp in the front, with a brief burst of carbonation that ceases immediately. A trifle flat in terms of fullness. Tastes like German malts. Not terribly complex.

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Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Opaque black. Two fingers of head developed (mostly because I messed up the pour) and dissipated quickly.

Smell: Roasted coffee malts up front with a slight hint of dark chocolate and caramel. I also got a little plumb.

Taste: Whoa. Very balanced. It's creamy smooth at first. Roasted coffee malts dominate and leave a bitter mouthfeel when it goes down. It was a shock after the impressive beginning.

Drinkability: A little too bitter for me, but it would make a great dessert drink.

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Photo of diamondc
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Fluffy brown head that stays around for a while, leaving some moderate lacing. Held up to the light reveals a ruby brown tint.

S: Has a nice floral aroma, definitely some chocolate in there, and hints of espresso.

T: Just a tad too sweet when it's chilled. Could almost past a milk stout at first. The espresso, chocolate flavors come out when it gets in the 50-60 degree range. Leaves a slightly burnt coffee / tobacco aftertaste.

M/D: The burnt aftertaste becomes a bit grating towards the end. The mouthfeel is smooth, well-carbonated, yet I wish it was a bit more thicker with some more complexity to warrant buying another.

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Photo of Dubbercody
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pretty darn tasty stout. Nice balance between the thin stouts and the heavy stouts. Fits into that niche when I want a stout but I don't need the RIS fullness. Maybe best described as a early stout as it's one of those that you might drink to get the beer motor started before jumping into something heavier. I like it...an appetizer stout....ah ha.

It's that Sierra Nevada thing, it's good, and I always enjoy their beers, but I often times pass them by and I don't know why. I'll have to remember to pause a little more often by their bottles.

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Photo of optimistictour
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Having always associated Sierra Nevada with their famous IPA offering I was pleasantly surprised to find both this and their porter on sale in individual bottles and eagerly snagged 'em.

A mention of bias: I love stouts. Porters too but that's not what we're talking about here. I love my stouts big and dark and complex, and usually strong - not for the getting-drunk factor but because a truly great strong beer is usually exceptionally nuanced in its flavor and always worth tackling. This one has a low-average abv yet achieves a swim with the big boys because of one thing: balance.

So this looks really damn good. Jet black, billowy dense head, it practically dances in the glass as it pours. This looks exactly how a stout should aspire to.

It smells like a stout should too, albeit a tad weakly. I really had to shove my nose into the glass to get a feel for this one which is unfortunate because the actual aroma is pleasant as you'd like.

Tastes smokey with less coffee or chocolate or any of the familiar notes stouts often hit. It's almost touching that upright porter feel while firmly in stout territory. This thing plants itself in a safe zone while tentatively hinting at larger issues. It's good but could certainly use some personality, some balls to stand out. I'd imagine this makes it more palatable to a wider audience though...

In the mouth Sierra Nevada really comes through. (I did not intend any double entendre here) Full bodied yet with the larger carbonation feel that a lesser abv affords, it's rich and hearty without any lingering alcohol taste or too-chewy texture.

Which of course means that it's easy to down this one. Drinkability matches the mouthfeel step for step. I'd easily offer this to, say, my girlfriend, who shies away from some of the massive stouts which often warm the cockles of my heart.

It's inviting and simple and probably makes a great gateway drug to the stout world. It surely beats the pants off Guinness by any measure.

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Photo of irishevans
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a- pours with a mighty frothy 2.5 finger pale tan head that dissolves slowly leaving behind a good thick lace and some foam around the edges. it appears black but when held to the light you can see it is an extremely dark dark red color

N- molasses and some other malty bready notes, not much of a roasted malt(barley) smell as one would expect from a stout. very faint bit of herbal/floral hop smell in there. still just not happy without the roasted smell

T- Also lost of molasses and bready notes, but now one can detect some coffee and a bit of a roasted flavor, and just a touch if floral hops that add a nice slight bite to the finish. generally over sweet, but I do like the floral hop flavor, not something one often sees in a stout.

M- thin for a stout, but definitely thicker than a porter. little ity bit under carbonated, but that is countered by the bit of hop flavor and bite in there

D- as sessionable as a stout gets. nice tasty, not over filling, and drinks down quick and easy.

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Photo of aforbes10
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle bought at Trader Joes in Chicago.

pours with a creamy head. black, but not quite opaque. towering lacing. odor of coffee and malts. taste is dry, roasted malts, bitterness, molasses. bubbly, reasonably thick mouthfeel. nothing special but decent stout. i'd have this again.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.57/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Compared to many other stouts that I've sampled, this wasn't the best, although it was certainly worth a try... compared to some other Sierra Nevada brews which were exceptional, this was more on the average side, although a good brew nonetheless... appearance was jet-black, with a modest frothy, tan head that quickly dissipated... Smell was full of cocoa and dark espresso... taste was rich, full of dark, burnt chocolate and the typical stout flavors... more bitter than I hoped and anticipated, so taste wasn't over-the-top... not a bad stab at the style, but not my favorite rendition either... all of Sierra Nevada brews are good, but this one was on the weaker side of the scale... Worth a try if you're a fan of the style, but there are better examples out there...

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Photo of MBrausen
3.57/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a CBS sniffer

A. Pour a dark caramel color, minimal foam, head was a small island at that resided to a think line around the rim very quickly

S. Smells of dark chocolate, coca nibs, mild toffee and slight hops. Well balance smell that is very pleasing.

T. Heavy toffee flavor and sweet fruit. Lightly with dark chocolate, finishing somewhat bitter and almost sour.

M. Medium body, a little watery for a Stout, smooth followed by a coarse after feeling. Almost flat feeling, but the carb bubbles are there.

O. Not a bad stout. Something simple and easy for the everyday stout drinker. I wouldn't put this on any search out list, but I would keep it around home for when non-craft beer fans come by and want something darker.

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Photo of MisterClean
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Madison Bear Garden in Chico.

A - Dark brown/black with a tan, slightly, foamy head.

S - Deep roasted malts with a light cream flavor. Malts almost seem over-steeped.

T - Very creamy with a strong roasted malt finish.

M - Maybe too creamy, but very quenching. Very surprised the roasted malts did not dry out the flavor of this beer.

D - Am a bigger fan of imperial stouts, but this one is fairly dirnkable.

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Photo of SpencerT
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color of this Stout is of espresso with a nice mocha head. The roasted malts give this stout an almost licorice scent with a faint hop aroma in the background.
The charred oak flavor gives this a great smokiness. The hop flavors aren't noticeable in this stout.
This would pair well with BBQ, Burgers, or any other grilled red meat. This isn't for the average beer drinker.

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Photo of NEhophead
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown bottle.

Creamy, dense coffee-colored head with solid retention. Spotted and condensed lacing with good strength. Murky dark brown with a dullish-red hue.

Moderate roasted maltiness; more of a bitter aroma than sweet. Mild dark chocolate aroma as well. Very subtle aromatics.

Moderate dark chocolate and espresso flavors at first with a pretty hefty roasted malt punch. Moderate hop presence contributes to a fairly dry and bitter finish. Finishes with a dark chocolate-filled aftertaste. Nothing that exciting in terms of flavor, but pretty true to the style.

Full bodied; a bit chewy and dry on the palate.

A bit of a bland tasting stout. Nothing bad, but nothing that'll have me going back for more. A slightly above average offering from the fellas in Chico.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A – Dark black with trace brown highlights. Pillowy, light tan head is creamy with nice lace and great retention.

S - Light malty booze with a distinct cola note and soft roast.

T – Light roast starts sharp and mellows out throughout the profile. Light smokiness. The profile gives out on the backend and finishes thin.

M – Medium body.

O – Not a bad stout, but could definitely use more depth.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled January 2010
A decent pour into my New Belgium Globe glass produces a three-finger thick, lightly brown colored head. The beer is a rich, dark, concentrated, chocolate brown colored beer. The aroma smells quite toasted, with lots of whole grain aromatics to it; it smells like a richly toasted, whole grain bread crust. Underneath the toasted malt there is a soft, lightly sweet, rich chocolate note. As the beer warms more of the roasted notes start to come out; it is a bit like a city roast coffee. The aroma is more savory than sweet or roasted, which wasn't what I was expecting.

Lightly sweet tasting, but not rich feeling, in fact it seems like it is a bit light bodied. The beer finishes with a bit of roast acidity, bitter burnt malt, and some astringency. Some dark chocolate flavors (which comes out more as the beer warms) subtly cut the edge of the roasted malt that dominates the flavor profile. This has quite a bit of hop bitterness to it as well. Up front there is a nice, richly toasted, whole grain character, but this quickly gets drowned out by the sharp finish (that is even a bit acrid at times).

I remember this being a bit of a let down the last time I reviewed this beer, but I was hoping that was just an off night. Unfortunately, this is one offering from Sierra Nevada that I can live without. It is just a bit too acrid, bitter and sharp in the flavor.

Sampled March 2005
4.15 Total
This beer pours a full black color and is topped by a frothy three-finger thick, brown colored head. The aroma is dry and roasty. I gets notes of coffee and smoke, as well as a certain woodiness that I can't quite place. In fact the aroma almost has a certain saltiness to it, but the dry roasted/ burnt grain notes certainly dominate.

This beer is definitely chewy with a full bodied character that coats my tongue. It is quite dry, despite the fullness, because of the roasted character of this brew. There is a certain fresh hop character here that peeks above the roasted notes, I get hints of pine and a certain herbal character. Flavors of coffee and burnt toffee dominate the flavor throughout, and this finishes quite dry with a solid bitterness that begs you to take another sip. The salty character is in the flavor as well, it is quite intriguing and adds a certain extra fullness to this beer.

This beer is most definitely a classic, when I first had it back in the early 90s I could not believe how much flavor was packed into this beer. The only complaint may be that this beer is a little too heavy on the roast malts, or at least the American ones, as it is a bit astringent in the finish. This is a minor complaint though, and it just makes you want to take another sip of this beer.

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Photo of sevenarts
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep, dark opaque brown, verging into black. Modest tan head, not much lacing.

S: Coffee and chocolate, roasted malts, dark fruits. Mild and pleasant.

T/M: As with the aroma, a mild, tasty stout. Coffee and chocolate dominate up front. Some dark fruity flavors, bready malts, and slightly bitter, burnt notes at the end of each sip. Creamy and smooth.

O: A fine, tasty and unassuming stout, very drinkable. Nothing mind-blowing, just a good stout.

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

dark brown pour with a nice amount of tan head and decent amounts of lacing. a roasted aroma right up front, hints of chocolate and coffee, i'm also getting a smell that reminds me of wet grass that's been sitting in a garbage can (i know it sounds odd.. it's a funk, but a sweet funk). a bitter taste at first, followed by a very metallic after taste. roasted grains, tobacco, not much else there honestly. medium bodied and light carbonation. a very dark tasting stout - in the sense that it's bitter. the mouthfeel throws me off a bit, it is medium bodied but a little on the watery side.. doesn't feel like i'm drinking a stout.

overall - not a bad stout if you like them bitter. i'd like to try this on tap sometime, but we really don't get anything aside from pale ale on tap in nj.

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Sierra Nevada Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 1,388 ratings.