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Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPASierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA

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9,493 Ratings

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Ratings: 9,493
Reviews: 2,699
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 225
Gots: 1,631 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: GClarkage on 05-12-2006

From the brewery ... Sierra Nevada Torpedo Ale is a big American IPA; bold, assertive and full of flavor and aromas highlighting the complex citrus, pine and herbal character of whole-cone American hops.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,493 | Reviews: 2,699 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of StephenRich
3.73/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

When it comes to crisp, clean, malty refreshment, there are few breweries that have as much experience quenching our palates as does Sierra Nevada. Sierra Nevada set the presence for Pale Ales in America winning its first gold medal back in 1993 at the Great American Beer Festival. But they also have a bigger, richer more potent quencher on the roster; the Torpedo Extra IPA.

This really is a classic American style IPA with significant malt character and that undeniably fresh and citrus west coast hop flavor. The Torpedo comes in at 65 IBUs, almost double the Pale Ale's 37 - so you should expect a good bitter punch from this beer, but still nothing crazy. Like all their beers, the Torpedo utilizes only whole cone hops; no pellets and no extracts. Sierra Nevada prides themselves on this, and thus they spent years developing the recipe for this IPA before it was finally released in early 2009 as a year round offering.

I recently opened a bottle with my roommate after a long hard day in the heat - we both needed something to cleanly refresh our palates and sooth the heat out of us. I went right for the Torpedo Extra IPA. We opened it right away cold around 5C (40F), which really is a bit to cold for a big IPA of this sorts, but we both wanted a cold quenching beer - so it was perfect for us at the time. This is really key here, the Serving Temperature Guide is just that - a guide. Everyone has their own preference for what temperature they enjoy certain beer's at, and every specific scenario may warrant a variation on that preference. The guide is meanly a suggestion as a starting place; but really, let your palate guide your journey.

The Torpedo comes in Sierra's typical stubby 355ml bottle at 7.2% abv. I poured it generously into a Sierra Nevada pint glass and the beer erupted with life and excitement right away. First a golden orange beer brewed slowly in the bottom, but curling waves of carbonation rushed through the beer as the bottle was emptied. It created a transparent golden orange beer with honey and rich amber browns shining though it holding up a big fluffy and pillowy 1.5 inch off white, cream colored, almost pearl head. It was loaded with bubbles and air standing its place for a few minutes then eventually fading to a sticky lacing on the beer.

The nose shows a great fresh rush of classic west coat hops and rich citrus fruits. Its filled with pine up front and the classic tartness of grapefruit and lemon peels. It is very up front and bitter with a hint of zesty funk. There is soft caramel sweet malt in the background, and hints of pepper and spice, but this nose is definitely dominated by floral hops, as you should expect.

A big wave of cold Torpedo is fresh and quenching everywhere on your palate and opens into your mouth with smooth sweet malts and the quick rush of quenching earthy hops. There are no two ways around it, the hops push their way into your palate bringing with them bright aromas and crisp flavors. Pine and fresh grapefruit peel are most dominant and up front, but floral spices, herbs, earth and touches of tropical fruit sweetness also hit my cheeks and play back around to my lips.

Its not devastatingly bitter, I certainly have had bigger beers before, but the Torpedo conducts itself very precisely. The soft balance of smooth pale malts and gentle caramel create a delicious character and help ease the overall fresh bitter bite which dominated this beer. The mouthfeel is succulent and perfect as you should expect from Sierra Nevada by now. It is light and creamy with modest carbonation and a real tooth grabbing texture. It does make me want more.

The finish is crisp and short performing its duty with care. Fresh pine and citrus show again on the edge and dissipate all malt sweetness from your palate. Go in for spicy Vindaloo or big Thai dishes; the Torpedo Extra IPA will meet the sweetness of the sauce, and quench every range of heat you can conjure up.

Photo of wvsabbath
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving type - bottle

Apperance - Golden brown, yellow amber

Smell - Hops, Malts, some suagrs, very citrus, grapefruit, orange

Taste - A strong acidic midly strong hoppy flavor dominates this beer. Lots of orange and malts. I even get some lemon in there. I do get traces of alcohol in each drink.

Mouthfeel - A bit strong and bitey. Mouth gets bittered from hops, and a little numbed from the boose. Aftertaste is a little bitter and strong.

Overall - For me, sierra's beers are usually smooth and flavorful, and mild. Torpedo has a bite, its stronger and has more kick then usual sierra beers. Plenty of hops and malts make this a enjoyable ipa. At 7.2% its low enough to enjoy a few. A very soild beer that brings some strongness, and flavor to the table. Recomended for ipa and hop lovers.

Photo of patpbr
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Dark copper color with a little head which last a min.

Smell-pine and some citrus

Taste- Pine flavored hops. its not to strong but gets your attetion

Mouthfeel- surprisingly a little lighter then expected. ending a little bitter

Drinkablitlity- its a good IPA, nice taste. going to stick to some others however

Photo of Chizoad
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For availability, this has to be one of the greatest beers around. I found this at a liquor store with a so-so selection, and have seen it many places that don't stock worthwhile brews. If you like the Hop Rod Rye but can't find that, this is a fantastic alternative.

Deep amber with a gloriously frothy head. Good lacing and excellent retention. Impressive from the start. Nice nose but it doesn't really prepare you for the taste. Malty and some hop goodness in there, but underwhelming.

Flavor is top notch, with a real depth to the malt that balances the hops perfectly. If anything it's a little less hoppy than I would like.

Excellent medium body that somehow didn't get too heavy. I took down three bottles in a nice session that certainly left me feeling the 7.2% ABV. Highly drinkable.

Photo of WOTO97
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Real tasty stuff here. What the "extra" is, I can only conjecture. Extra tasty? Extra special? Maybe an allusion to the spice notes? At any rate this fella has a delicious and relatively complex hop profile.

The body is a bit more amber in color with a head that soon dissolves into a thin sudsy film. The lacing is a relatively dense web.

Nose is spicy, floral, pine resin, and a generous citrus dose along with a noteworthy bread crust note in the background.

Flavors mirror the nose for the most part. Followed up Big Daddy from Speakeasy with this one, so the flavors, specifically the spice notes, really popped for me. Some pepper, maybe even parsley, is noticeable. Citrus and pine are very present here; the citrus has a bit more sweet bitterness than the nose. While allowing a big hop bombardment, the malt profile is strong enough to provide some balance. Slight biscuit and fresh bread characteristics here.

The body on this beer is just about perfect, if not a bit too dense. Has a nice lingering feel to remind you what you got in your hands.

This beer is so solid, as are most in their arsenal. Highly recommended.

Photo of uhhhaaron
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

consumed 04-12-2010, 12oz bottle into pint glass.

Poured a dark orange to copper color with a decent fluffy head that lasted a bit but eventually went down to a thin film. Still very inviting.

Smell is extremely inviting. Sweet caramel, pine, fresh grass, mild mint, hoppy.. Overall just a nice fresh smelling beer.

Taste is exceptional as well. Sweet malt up front with caramel & bready notes. Followed by that signature SN hop presence.. Lots of citrus..orange peel bitterness is there. Lots of PINE. Burnt resin but not too sharp like other IPAs.. Very fresh finish with a mild to medium hop bitterness that lingers after its all down..

mouthfeel is spot on with good drinkability even at 7.2% abv.

Overall a very solid IPA that I like to always have on hand. Another great job by SN. A true classic in my book.

Photo of ommegangpbr
3.82/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In short, this is a pretty easy to find IPA that's of pretty high quality. Solid hop character with solid fruit flavors in the body. From the Sierra beers I've had I tend to find something in a typical or signature flavor; with this one, I wouldn't necessarily pin this down as a Sierra Nevada beer, which is a nice feature.
I do prefer Sierra's Celebration to this, but assuming that this is a year round brew I like knowing that it's around.

Photo of rgrholmes168
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hoppy. Before I go into the rest the first thing I can say is that this is a very hoppy beer. You get a whiff of the aroma as soon as the beer is poured.
The beer is a tawny orange. As you drink the beer, the sides of the glass becomes covered with lace and the top of the beer is lightly covered with the same.
The aroma is one that is strong with hops, not overpowering, but perfect for a strong IPA.
I feel that this is a complex beer, but it has a nice light mouthfeel. Slightly bitter aftertaste that really makes you remember your last sip.
Very good offering from Sierra Nevada.

Photo of RickS95
3.05/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A light amber in color, very clear with a fluffy beige head on top.

A combination of pine, citrus and pepper fill the nose.

Definitely an IPA. To be honest, too bitter to identify any distinct tastes. Not sure what pine tasts like, but there was a taste that I can only define as pine.

It's highly astringent in the mouth. It's bitter from beginning to end. Will certainly put hair on your chest.

This is a man's beer. It's very strong in its bitterness and has a lot of alcohol, though I didn't get much alcohol burn. It's difficult to give it high drinkability scores because it's so bitter and strong.

Photo of climax
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Been meaning to try this one for too long now, especially for how readily available it is. It poured a bronze/copper with a massive head that cratered with the remaining pour. The retention was excellent as was the thick lace covering the rim of my pint glass.

The aroma definitely let me know it wasn't a typical IPA, as the hop bill is quite distinct and unusual. Minty floral and grassy tones rivaled grapefruit and soapiness for hop supremacy. The toasty malt backbone definitely sits on the bench, but it's presence is noble.

The flavor held the same good qualities that the smell started. Juicy citrus flavor creeps in as the initial whack of grass and soap subside. Red apple mealy flavor begins to shift the beer from bitter to sweet. Sweetness from the malt finds it's way in towards the finish and as the beer warms. Complex to say the least.

Creamy and thick, the body slides it's way around. The carbonation is mild, and does not distract from viscous feel. The finish is sticky and has a grassy dryness, that can only be described as if you were to just eat grass.... That being said, the hops used in this brew are not typical, and may be hit or miss. Whatever the cost, I like it.

Photo of nova009
3.23/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A- pours a nice golden bronze color, a sticky one finger white head that retains well on the glass, spotty lacing

S- bitter hops accompanied by bitter citrus most notably grapefruit, piney, slightly sweet after notes

T- wow this is a hoppy, one honestly it overpowers any sweet or citrus flavors that could come out of it, I really like IPA's and DIPA's but this is way too bitter for me

M- medium bodied, smooth and creamy, not overly carbonated, dry finish

D- the overall feel of the beer is pretty good I just think this is an overly bitter IPA with hardly any sweetness to balance it out, I'd have a hard time putting down more than one of them

Photo of eclaycamp
4.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. I've had Torpedo on numerous occasions since it was released last year and it's quickly become my go-to IPA, probably my favorite commercial example available in my local market. Pours a bright copper with a great sticky head. Heck, I could spend just hours looking at this beer, it's that pretty. Aroma is pretty all hops. You get booming amounts of pine with some grassy citrus notes. The first sip lets you know you're in for a hop treat, but the bitterness doesn't kill the tongue. Some IPAs are so assertive that they basically strip the enamel from your teeth, but this beer never approaches those levels. Instead it goes the opposite direction. The mouthfeel from this beer is almost oily from all the hops, but it works. There has to be malt there to keep it balanced but I can't find it. There's a terrific lingering bitterness in the finish. This beer is really incredible.

Photo of detlefchef
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rich amber color with very thick foam that lingers.

Vibrant piney hints somehow squeeze through some rather serious red fruit and malty aromas.

Wow! Tons of citrus fruit surround rich malt and great body.

Big but quite drinkable.

I've always been quite satisfied with Sierra Nevada's Pale. This is my first with this and, honestly, it's very much a benchmark big IPA.

Photo of tetonka4kzoo
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Has a nice copper hue. Had a 1 finger head that quickly dissipated to a lacey head. Good retention along the snifter.

Has a hoppy citrus aroma. Pine is very noticeable.

Has a biting grapefruit taste. The bitterness from the hops cut torpedo's sweetness. Very hoppy like most Sierra Nevada beers. Has some hint of caramel.

Medium-bodied and decent carbonation. Drinkability is alright; it's a fairly strong IPA after 2 of them.

Photo of MVotter
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - The Sierra Nevada Torpedo pours into a chalice a foggy bronze color with an ample cream-colored head.

B - I always say it with brews like this ... I LOVE the "fresh" aroma that hoppy beers emit. The fresh hops aroma is accompanied by a grapefruity smell.

T - The nose is transferred to the palate. Nice balance of sweet and bitter hops here. The front is grapefruit hops, wonderful blends in the middle (some sweetish/honey malt-like flavors in the middle) ... the finish has a hint of a bitter hop flavor.

M - Medium/heavy body, nice effervescence, and a nice dry finish ... leading you, conveniently, to the next sip.

D - A delicious brew, expertly crafted. Hopilicious.

Photo of Spica66
3.82/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into pint glass.

A: Medium amber/copper color. Very clear. Minimal white head which dissipates quickly.

S: Piney/floral hops and that is about it. Malt is very distant if present at all.

T: Piney, sharp taste. It is a very "cutting" sort of bite that it has. Extremely different than any other AIPA I have had. I am wondering what formula of hops it took to get this effect...

M: Creamy and nice.

D: After 2, the sharpness of the hops got to me and I had to stop.

Photo of Anthony1
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours the typicial SNPA copper color, but with considerably better head retention and lacing. Lot's of sticky lacing all around in this one. On the nose, you can tell right off this is going to be a seriously hoppy IPA. There is pepper, a touch of pine and bitter citrus, which comes across as pretty dry. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose, except I confess I was completely unprepared for the amount of hoppy bitterness in this one. Wow. The beer starts off with some malty sweetness, but the sweetness is quickly buried in an avalanche of hoppy, dry, spicey bitterness. There is a huge hoppy presence in this beer, and I have to say I'm pretty impressed. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the abv. is very well disguised.

Photo of divineaudio
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz into a pint glass.

pours amber with some lighter golden highlights. got a pinky's worth of off white head that calms to a long lasting thin cap pretty quickly. leaves thick swaths of lacing behind.

smell is deeply herbal hops with a bit of pine and toasted malts.

taste gives you all the elements found in the nose. toasted malts and deep, almost earthy, herbal hop character. has a piney bitterness that stops short of ripping your taste buds off, then subsides pretty quickly and hangs around in the background for a while. no trace of the 7.2% in the taste.

body is on the heavier side of medium with a good amount of carbonation. sort of coats the mouth as you drink it.

pretty drinkable, but not one i could have more than 2 of in a sitting before moving on to something else. a solid example of the style though.

Photo of denflyr
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Boy do I love Sierra Nevada products! Another solid offering by the guys in Chico! Poured from the bottle into my Great Divide Cervoise glass. Excellent head retention and a nice lacing character!

The nose gets better as the beer warms a bit, even at cooler temps, I get a nice hop (herbal/piney) and malt character.

The taste as you would expect from an Extra IPA as they call it is hops and then hops with a nice malt character (caramel) to round out and soften the hopiness.

The mouthfeel is nice with nothing harsh about the brew. No annoying hop bitterness or aftertastes. In other words a well executed beer!

Drinkability is good, but with a higher ABV for this single IPA style, you would have to be careful, plus the hops after bit will do a number on your palate!

Again nice work from the guys out west. This is one of go too beers...I am surprised I have not written it up earlier!

Photo of goblue3509
3.29/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a orangish amber color with a two finger head which gives way to nice lacing down the glass. The aroma is faint and mainly of hops pine, citrus, and earthy hops. The taste has a sweet caramel malt backbone with hop flavors over the top, pines and earth mainly with hints of citrus. The mouthfeel is moderately carbonated with a nice rich creamy feel to it. The drinkablility is good, it isn't the biggest hop bite but has a nice bite, there is a nice balance which makes an easier drink. Overall its a solid ipa with nothing to ditract but not the best.

Photo of blackc5
3.63/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours the expected amber orange with a decent, lingering head and some moderate lacing.

S - A bit mild, but what is there is hoppy. Mostly get herbal and pine notes, with some decent caramel malt.

T - Fairly one-note hoppiness - herbal and pine dominate with little in the way of citrus. Moderately bitter, but lacking the qualities of a high quality IPA.

M - Medium bodied with a bit of oiliness on the tongue. Medium+ carbonation.

D - A good IPA all things considered, but far short of the bar set by others. Nevertheless easy to down, and for the price it delivers.

Photo of brewmudgeon
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

torpedo bottled 161st day of 2010 (about 50 days before tasting)

a 4.5 2-finger head drops slowly and leaves a dense cap, good lace.

s 4-4.25 citrus (orange and grapefruit rind) and pine seem nearly equally represented; pale malt noted in the background, crackery, almost biscuity. could be bolder, but it's still nice. some tropical vibes as warms.

t 3.5 this beer seems better than the first time i tried it, shortly after its release. been avoiding it. pretty simple flavor profile, the hops are balanced by the malt, and a rindy aftertaste lingers long. soft around the edges. there is something unpleasant in the flavor to me, though, a raw onion pithiness or something.

m 4.5 mouthfeel pretty much nails it. the right combo of resiny, medium full bodied, fine creamy carbonation. does not quite risk an overlushness as Anniversary does (did).

d 4 flavor a bit too one sidedly rindy, and the ample malt sweetness makes it a little too soft, but things improve enough with some warming to come back to this offering now and then. a comfort ipa. yet after enough sessions of this it has seemed to reveal more and more of an oniony and a tealike astringency that is getting me out of torpedo groove.

Photo of mralphabet
3/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into pint glass...

First I have to say I'm not a big IPA guy... that being said.

A: Amber colored, nice big head (2 fingers), settle to a nice layer of foam and wonderful lacing... Great looking beer.

S: Hops.... Wow lots of it... Maybe a little piny & floral and a little hint of honey. (I love the way a IPA smells)

T: Taste like it smell, lots of hops, touch of honey midway through and then a hoppy bitter aftertaste... (This is what I don't like about IPAs)

M: Lighter than I thought it might be.... but gets a little thicker as it warms.

D: ABV is great for a IPA, but the over board hops makes this a one a session beer for me. If you like it hoppy give it a try....

This is a Sierra Nevada and they always do a great job, just not a big fan of the hop bombs.

Photo of WeedKing4
3.8/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pours a clear, dark amber brown with a considerable amount of head. Tastes of very bitter hops but thats about it. No real secondary flavours here as the finish kinda fades quickly. Its very easy to drink and I have had worse, but this didn't wow me away. Decent beer though.

Photo of salvo
3.92/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear tea brown with gold and red highlights under a finger of quickly dissipating head, which soon disappears leaving very little lace. Carbonation is fizzy -- seems added rather than natural.

Scent is straightforward west-coast hops: pine, citrus, grass, but without much complexity; some sweet malt in the smell.

Taste is bitter, then hops, then finishes sweet with the malt, but few nuances of flavor. It's a great "first" American xIPA to share, and I'll always pick up a six pack when they're on sale at the grocery or liquor store.

For a nationally-available volume brand, this is respectable stuff, and likely something approachable I would share with newbies or early in a tasting to represent American pale ales; certainly something to aspire to being able to do at home, but lacking an real depth of character.

Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 9,493 ratings.