1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,273 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,273
Reviews: 1,450
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 13.11%
Wants: 57
Gots: 144 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-17-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,273 | Reviews: 1,450 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Apellonious

North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

A - Pours a clear yellowish gold with a fluffy finger and a half head

S - Light pine, metallic tinge

T - Bread. Pick up hints of grass and herbal notes.

M- Creamy, slightly on the low side of carbonation.

O - A refreshing highly drinkable lager. Probably more suited for an outside summer activity quencher than a sitting on the couch evening beer review.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2014 01:45:36 | More by Apellonious
Photo of keithmurray

New York

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

appearance - clear straw color with white head

smell - fresh cut grass, black pepper,lemon zest, wheat

taste - close to the smell, lemon zest, black pepper, wheat, grass, cracker

mouthfeel - crisp, refreshing, high carbonation, medium bodied, good amount of bitterness on the finish

overall - good, refreshing beer for those hot summer afternoons, worth a try

price point - $16.99/12pk

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2012 00:56:42 | More by keithmurray
Photo of ClockworkOrange


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A 12 ounce bottle purchased at the Beer Stop for $1.75. Poured into me shaker glass, this pils appears a hazed muted straw color with about a finger of bone white foam. Flavor and aroma are of lightly toasted grains, lemon, grassy hops. Just about medium in both body and carbonation. A decent warm weather lager.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2009 05:15:45 | More by ClockworkOrange
Photo of cvfish


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer pours a golden straw color that produced a fluffy white head that had some retention and left little lace

S - The aromas produced by this beer were mild, some malts and hops

T - The taste of this beer was crisp, clean breadiness, some fruits, and a little hops on the finish

M - The mouthfeel on this beer had a light body with a moderate amount of carbonation

D - This was a very easy drinking beer, my idea of a real pilsener the goes great on those hot southern days

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2009 01:48:37 | More by cvfish
Photo of showell


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'm starting to get quite partial to Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. I have yet to try one that I didn't like and this one was no exception, even though I'm usually not too much on lagers. This one poured a standard golden color, and what scent it had was malty with a touch of citrus. I was thinking at the time, well here goes Sierra's perfect run with me. I'm not going to like this one. The taste really caught me off guard though. It was a really nice citrus flavor, with quite a lot more hoppiness than I expected from a lighter beer. It was carbonated more than I typically like... but it was still quite drinkable. Good on a hot day when you're really thirsty. All in all, if I want a lager, I'll definitely get it again.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2009 23:19:30 | More by showell
Photo of ultralarry2006


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle. Left less than a one finger head that quickly dissipated into surface skim, no lacing. Body was a clear gold.

Smell - grassy, slightly herbal, bready malt.

Taste - like the smell - grassy, some herbs, some bready malt.

Mouthfeel - full, smooth, low carbonation.

Drinkability - This goes down easy, especially on a hot day, and is good. Very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2006 19:49:43 | More by ultralarry2006
Photo of alexgash


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden yellow, with a big, wet, white head. I'm picking up graham cracker sweet malts, and slight hops. The taste is buttery smooth and apple-y sweet malts, with a quenchingly crisp bittersweet finish. Pretty refreshing summer brew. Not my favorite SN product.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2003 02:17:23 | More by alexgash
Photo of wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

BB date 04/10/09, served lightly chilled in a pilsner glass.

A: dark golden hue, an off-white creamy head with good retention, on top of lively carbonation full of microscopic fizz.
S: deeply flowery aromatic hops hand in hand with semi-candyish+honeyish+lightly grainy malts (reminiscent of some pale Scottish ale I've tried), intense aroma of fruitiness like peach and sweet lemon-grass sustains solid in the background.
T: a mouthful of spritzy, lightly toasted grainy flavour descends on the palate, along with an intensifying flow of sweet fruity and mildly honeyish flavour; gradually giving way to an herbal-hoppy and quietly bitter aftertaste that is bittersweet, zesty and dryish in the finish, where the lager's crisp sourness keeps a restrained presence.
M&D: lively but still smooth on the mouthfeel, with a medium-plus hoppiness in support of the overall malty flavour upfront, although in the end a slightly sticky mouthfeel gradually prevails. This is a decent lager overall.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2008 19:19:50 | More by wl0307
Photo of mostpoetsdo

Rhode Island

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Bright, but fairly light gold, a very creamy looking head that left behind some nice lacing. A bit of a short pour, making the head seem not so great due to lack of retention, and no beer to fill the void. Shame on you, server.

S: Not that powerful, but malty, herbal and floral scent too, almost dank.

T: Crisp and a decent bite of bitter hops. That dank herbal taste shows up again and again. Finishes fairly malty and overall enjoyable.

M: Kind of thin, maybe a little too carbonated, but still hits the spot for the style I suppose.

D: Really good, one of the better "summer" labeled beers out there, definitely worth a shot.

Serving type: on-tap

08-02-2010 01:44:59 | More by mostpoetsdo
Photo of allergictomacros

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big grassy aroma on the pour. Color is clear straw and head unremarkable. Second whiff gives up light malty goodness with a tinge of lemon. Sweet, grainy, bready, herbal hop with a good bitter bite. Light, smooth body without being watery. Very drinkable, light brew with a decent flavour.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2010 22:49:57 | More by allergictomacros
Photo of jdense


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into Weiss glass 8.3.2010.

Billowing white rocky head, pretty quick dissipation with minimal lacing. Clear light gold body, several streams of rising carbonation. Nose is fairly sweet balanced by floral hops. Taste mirrors nose, a slight bit of bitterness but certainly on the sweet side. Light mouthfeel with not a lot of effervescence. Certainly drinkable, but there are a lot of better Pilseners to be had.

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2010 03:48:31 | More by jdense
Photo of pmccallum86


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden bubbly body with a thick bubbly two finger head that dissipates slowly.

Smell is of grass, straw and lemons. Not very potent but pleasant.

Taste is of light crisp summer time pilsener, which I suspect was their aim. Fresh light biscuit malt and lemon citrus zest, maybe some grass too.

Mouthfeel is thin and smooth, also a little creamy.

Pretty drinkable, would be great at lunch outdoors on a sunny summer day.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2009 05:21:31 | More by pmccallum86
Photo of McStagger


3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a nice golden straw with moderate carbonation. Head is bleached white with minimal retention, but nice lacing.

S: Let's get it going. Good pilsner smell of grass, husked grain, touch of lemon and a bit of caramelized sugar.

T: Good malt presence of husked grain and a touch of burnt sugar. Moderately spicy hop presence. Still, the malt plays the bigger role here

M: A bit full bodied for me. This lager doesn't strike me as being particularly crisp or drying like the traditional Bohemian styles.

O: Disappointing translation of the style. The hops really don't push through enough to give this beer that nice crisp edge that really defines the Czech Pilsners.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2012 07:36:26 | More by McStagger
Photo of merlin48


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2004 Summerfest pours a clear, sparkling, medium yellow body that has thousands of bubbles streaking to the surface. Attractive head is white and cumulus cloud pillowy, climbing to about an inch in height. Patchy lace is quite abundant.

Aroma is dominated by dry, herbal hops and pale malt. The hops tend to be of a noble nature, and are far from being "eurohop skunky".

Mouthfeel is average, with good carbonation and light body.

Taste is well balanced, with a mild herbal hop bitterness melding into soft and slightly sweet malt flavors.

Crisp and refreshing, overall. A very drinkable example of a well done American effort at a German pale lager or Pils.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2004 23:15:53 | More by merlin48
Photo of Roguer


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Dark amber, kind of a honey color; borders on translucent; decent finger-plus white head. No significant lacing, but head retention was nice.

S - A little floral hop coming off the nose, and some esters. Not a ton to appreciate. Sweetness and malts, but obviously some bright hops are put into this lager.

T - Definitely a sweet, slightly hoppy pilsner. Minor caramel malts, some honey. It's a bit of an odd mixture in a pilsner, although certainly not bad.

M - Light, although a little more full than a typical pilsner. No sense of booziness whatsoever, and very minor carbonation sting.

O - This is a good Summer drink, but I can't see preferring it over a Hefe (for my palate). It just strikes me as a little off: not a normal lager, some ale-like flavorings, but a pilsner format. It's a good combination, but not my favorite.

Serving type: on-tap

07-26-2013 15:28:12 | More by Roguer
Photo of scooter231

New York

3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks like it should- golden, clear, decent head. Minimal lacing. Smell is faintly hoppy and floral. Nothing superbly special. Taste reminds me a lot of Becks- pilsnery, German, grassy and hoppy. Nothing too strong or overwhelming. Becks, definitely. Mouthfeel is slightly sudsy and very very light. Overall quite drinkable, crisp and refreshing, light. Sierra + Becks.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2006 02:34:40 | More by scooter231
Photo of mhaugan


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Server up a deep gold in color with a nice head. Has a touch of hop aroma, slightly herbal or grassy. The taste was better than most for the style. Reminded me much more of an ale than an Pilsner. The hop profile was citricy and slightly spicy. A great gateway beer, refreshing and would have worked in a session.

Serving type: on-tap

06-02-2008 22:11:11 | More by mhaugan
Photo of Gruntlumber


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm amazed at how varied the reviews are for this beer. Some call it "too heavy", even though it's one of the lightest micros I've ever had. Some say "too bitter, hoppy", even though there is barely a trace of hoppiness in my opinion. Some say it tastes like Bud. Some say it tastes like SN's Pale Ale. Maybe this brew varies a lot from year to year, because I disagree with many of these comments.

This is definitly a pilsner-style lager: pours very light and has a nice refreshing aroma with a hint of hoppiness. If I tasted this blind, I would say it tastes like Pilsner Urquell, one of the best lagers out there. I want to taste the two side-by-side because the similarities are many. Summerfest has a fresher, cleaner taste however, probably because it IS fresher than the imported PU. I thought this was a great brew. Lagers are never really high on my list because they are all so similar, but given the choice I'd take this anyday over most other lagers.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2005 15:51:46 | More by Gruntlumber
Photo of champ103


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a transparent yellow color. At first a two finger white head forms, but recedes to nothing in an instant. No lace to speak of.
S: A mineral/sulfur aroma at first, but that quickly fades to some light grassy and floral hops. Grain, cereal, and light biscuit aromas.
T: Some biscuit. grain, and cereal again. Very light grassy and floral hops.
M/D: A lighter body with medium carbonation. Not watery at all though. Crisp, clean, and refreshing. Easy and smooth to drink. An easy choice for a session beer.

A pretty good beer. Nothing all that special. Though it is a really good beer for the summer. Obviously that is the goal here, but other than at a BBQ for the summer I probably won't get this again.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2009 00:29:11 | More by champ103
Photo of IrishRedRock


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear golden brew with a beautifully thick and well retaining head. That seems to be a rarity for a lager. Mild sweet fruit in the nose, with traces of grain, husk, and a mild malt aroma.

Not the most complex of beers, but I don't think that is what Sierra Nevada is aiming for here. It's a thirst quencher on a hot day, and it fits that role well. The malt character of the beer is pretty high, and thus the full malty finish is its defining characteristic. Mild citrus flavors are also detectable. Mouthfeel is carbonated and bubbly, but does not detract from the drinkability. Worth a try, and I can see myself drinking more of this when the weather gets hot.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2003 21:45:46 | More by IrishRedRock
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice malty scent that boasts of pale malts and lager yeast. It has a dry aroma. The taste is decent. It has a crisp pale malt flavor with a slight hop bitterness and a very dry lager yeast finish. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a decent lager. It has excellent aroma and smooth flavor; a good drinker.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2004 02:05:32 | More by WesWes
Photo of jabocu


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden yellow color with a thin white effervescent cap. Cap gone in a few seconds. Aroma is lite with light sweet malt, floral, and hint of lemon. Light grain and yeast in nose. Flavor is sweet grain, lime, mild hops, and yeast. Body is light, with very crisp carbonation. I could drink a six pack of these in a sitting. Not very complex, but very refreshing and tasty for the style. Good Job!

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2006 00:46:17 | More by jabocu
Photo of chodinheaven


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pretty clear straw color with a white and bubbly one inch head that has decent retention. Smells slightly skunked maybe, and a slight floral hop to counteract that.

Taste is more complex than your normal pilsener or lager with a small hoppy bitterness that balances out a fun little maltiness. both flavors are pretty subtle but create a really solid and refreshing beer on a hot summer day. With a perfect crisp and totatlly refreshing mouthfeel, this beer becomes one of my favorites to simply enjoy when I'm relaxing in the summer. It's fairly simple and concise, leaving me to enjoy a decent beer that's also refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2011 05:26:50 | More by chodinheaven
Photo of SiriusAth


3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into a pint glass a clear, pale gold with a nice 2-finger cap of pure white foam. Retention is better than average for a pilsner with some nice bands of lace right from the get-go.

The nose is lemony, grassy, and floral, but very clean; classic pils. There is some just discernible pale malt type sweetness but very understated.

Pleasant lemony flavors start in the mouth, followed by a touch of sweetness and ending with a mildly bitter finish. Well balanced, nothing too extraordinary but in no way bad.

Crisp, refreshing, dry, good carbonation, just above light bodied (if light=1 and medium=2, then it's a 1.4). As such, this beer does exactly what it is supposed to do on those dog days.

Summerfest is a well crafted beer that fits the season well with its supremely easy drinkability and quenching qualities. I could drink this all day long on a hot one, and I'm not much of a lager fan except when very well done. A solid brew from a solid brewery. Cheers Sierra Nevada!

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2008 05:11:17 | More by SiriusAth
Photo of Stimack

New York

3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Must thank my sister for bring this when she visited this past week. First time giving this brew a try and needless to say I was not disappointed. The brew poured to a somewhat deep golden color with some amber like highlights. Fair sized white head that has nice retention leaving good retention. The aroma is a nice mix of malt (sweet, slight grass like, fresh feel) and Hops (spice like feel in the nose when taking a deep smell). The flavors are nice, again malt comes to mind first but not as sweet as the nose would lead you to believe. The malt flavor quickly breaks to the hop which dominates the back half but not in an over powering way, saaz is clear in the flavor. Has a medium dry finish. Overall I like this brew, nice character, satisfying although not overly rememberable. I would get this again, but it will not stick in my mind to run out and get again.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2008 01:23:13 | More by Stimack
Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 3,273 ratings.