Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,838 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,838
Reviews: 1,528
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 12.84%
Wants: 90
Gots: 418 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-17-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,838 | Reviews: 1,528
Photo of mjurney
4.4/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2014 Edition.

Pale gold color, a little hazy. Good amount of carbonation rising. Small frothy head.

Spicy and floral hops, sweet malts, grassy, grainy.

Sweet malts, grassy, grainy, cracker, a little biscuit. Spicy-floral hops towards the end. Finish is dry, very crisp. Body is light-medium, crisp, refreshing.

It's an outstanding beer.

Photo of Beric
4.04/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Serving: From the bottle
Served: 26 May 2014

RE-REVIEW: Original review 15 July 2013, rated 3.94 overall

Appearance: Enjoyed this beer from the bottle while grilling the standard Memorial Day fare, so can't really make new comments about the appearance.

Smell: Smells somewhat grassy with assertive spicy hop notes in the nose. Hoppiness in the nose is quite unlike an APA or IPA, but the quality is certainly much more assertive than a standard Czech pils like Pilsner Urquell.

Taste: Fantastically complex pilsner. This one has all the crisp characteristics of a standard pils but with just a hint more hops than what one would expect. Great malt backbone overlayed with just the right amount of hops to make this beer appropriately to style but still authentically "Sierra Nevada" too. The beer finishes pretty dry, just like a pils should.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation and body makes this one extremely drinkable.

Overall: This beer is an extremely underrated offering from Sierra Nevada, primarily due to the style. The Czech pils style, like other light lager styles, showcases subtleties in the malts and hops and this brew does just that. You're not browbeaten with hops but the beer isn't thin and bland like macro lagers. This is an extremely well-crafted summer beer which is refreshing and flavorful. The perfect beer for grilling. Would highly recommend, especially for fans of Czech and German pils.

Photo of Foyle
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into schooner glass.

Appearance: pours a thick, sudsy white head that gradually falls with some mild lacing. Color is slighty hazy gold with abundant streaming carbonation.

Aroma: plenty of white bread malt, some sweetness, grassiness, and herbal hop aroma.

Mouthfeel: light, crisp and refreshing with a nice dry finish.

Flavor: pleasant malty sweetness blends well with some lemon, grass, and tangy hops.

Overall: most excellent. Compares equally with Czech Pilsners.

Photo of SitkaSteve
4/5  rDev +9.3%

So many times I've had this and so many times I've never had it in a pilsener. Woops, until now. Yes!
Here goes.
The appearance was a nice clear golden yellow color with a carbonation seen rising at a nice pace. There was a nice two finger white foamy head that dissipated at a nice pace. Light lacing comes about.
The smell was crisp and refreshing sweet corn with a light hay and light grassy touch.
The taste was basically the same with no aftertaste or finish.
The mouthfeel was crisp and sat light on the body with a great sessionability about it.
Overall, this beer screams Summer. One can't beat the price so every year I've been nabbing at least a sixer of it for a good long time of my beer drinking life.

Photo of CBCatx
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So good. Very light, crisp, and refreshing.

Appearance- Light golden color, lots of bubbles, quickly disappearing head, nice lacing as you continue drinking it.

Taste- Initally a malt forward taste, balanced on the back end with a 'just right' hop taste. So refreshing on a hot summer day.

Mouthfeel- Medium-high carbonation, medium-light body. Very drinkable.

Overall- I love this beer on a hot day. Perfect beer for those long summer days spent out in the sun. Very approachable and sessionable. Will be a standby for me this summer.

Photo of BrandonLBC
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A--Very light yellow, completely clear. Has a light head that dissolves quickly. Minimal lacing.

S--Malt first, followed by just a hint of floral/and or pine hops. The hop smell is there, but very light.

T--Very crisp. with the malt up first and then just about the right amount of hop goodness, certainly about right for a lager

M--Light to medium carbonation feels great on the mouth and makes it extremely drinkable. Quite refreshing as well. I'd love to have a few of these at a barbecue on a summer afternoon.

O--Another great beer from Sierra Nevada, and I'm so glad we can get it here in Utah. It's pretty much exactly what I expect from a good craft lager/Pils. That full flavor gives it a good bounce over other more generic lagers. Looking forward to having quite a few of these this summer.

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Packaged 4/10/14. 5.0% ABV

Photo of FlyingKneeStrike
3.05/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours a bright yellow color. Minimal head retention. I expected it to taste a bit better, but definitely good for a lager. I was expecting more citrus notes but I can't detect any, it's a tad bit watery but I guess that is to be expected of this style. Found at Trader Joe's for 7.99 a 6 pack so a fair price. A good beer but don't think I would get it again.

Photo of delta490
3.92/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a pale clear gold with a fizzy white head. Minor retention a small amount of lacing. The aroma is equally mild, with light notes of bread and cut grass. The taste is also mild, but not lacking in any way. Nice bread with a mild light fruit and earthy hops. It has a light body and a crisp finish. A nice light-bodied full-flavored lager.

Photo of rkat32
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottling date 3/27/14. Poured into a New Glarus nonic pint glass.

Color: A striking light gold hue with a one-finger head that slowly recedes. Medium, but lively, carbonation. Very clear.

Smell: Floral, spicy Saaz hops definitely at the forefront. Also picking up some nice grassy and lemon notes along with some light cracker malt. Smells more like a German pils than a traditional Bohemian / Czech pilsener. Very pleasant.

Taste: Excellent noble hop character, grass, spice, grainy malts. Clean, refreshing, quaffable. Very light body and finishes on the dry side, leaving one to want another sip.

Overall: A highly-recommended U.S.-based lager that is widely available. I look forward to its release each year and can’t wait for the canned version to hit my market. Slowly becoming a can’t-miss classic in my book.

Photo of tillmac62
3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a crystal clear very light amber (yellow) with a reasonable head. Laces well with poor retention. The nose is almost nonexistent, just a slight yeast fragrance. Light bodied with an above average carbonation level. The flavor profile is nice, but not complex. Against a very light biscuit background sweetness, the Saaz hop is noticeable but muted. The finish is clean and crisp with a nice effervescence that flows into a slight bitterness that lingers. A very good Pilsener, but not in the same league as Pilsner Urquell.

Photo of ArrogantB
3.42/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from a sixer that cost $8.99. Light yellow color, fizzy, decent head. Aroma of lager yeast, bit of cracker. Flavor is lager yeast, malts, not much hoppiness that my amateur palate can detect. This is pretty crisp and refreshing though with a decent ABV so you can have a couple without getting throwed.

Photo of jokelahoma
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a can, because cans are awesome.

Pours a lovely clear golden color. Decent head, too.

Aroma is bready, like fresh from the oven bready, coupled with a nice dose of hoppy goodness. There's really not much more to say. That's a great thing, since this is a pils, which should be clean, crisp, and simple, not some overly complex work of evil brewing genius that takes hours to decipher. Very nicely done with just the simple malt and hops in the nose.

Flavor mirrors that beautiful simplicity. It's clean barley malt, with a good charge of hops to give it a kick. Not super bitter, but more so than a standard American adjunct lager, by far. The hops are slightly flowery, a bit earthy, and mix perfectly well with the malt to create a great clean flavor.

Mouthfeel is lightish, and again, what more can you ask? It works for the style

This is a nice pilsner. Refreshing, no overwhelming or out of balance in any way. Still enough oomph to stand out from the BMCs, yet light enough to fit in perfectly well at a barbecue or poolside (hooray, cans!). I've a feeling I'll be drinking plenty of this all summer when not enjoying home brew.

Photo of anchie
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Poured into a pilsner glass

A) Golden yellow with two finger quickly dissipating head
S) wheat with a metallic note
T) Malts with bitter metallic finish
M) Dry, prominent carbonation
O) Uncharacteristic of Sierra, would not buy again, but overall a typical pilsner

Photo of BeerDawgs
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Golden with clarity, lots of bubbles, and some nice lacing left all over the glass. A beautiful pilsner

S - Grain and wheat, and a bit of hop spiciness

T - Malty and organic. Well balanced, and tasty!

M - Crisp and smooth. Medium carbonation. Oily. Nice...

O - Sierra Nevada nails the style. I could drink these all day. Well done!

Photo of gonzo000
3.4/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

a. light golden in color. 2 finger head with disappears quickly.

s. Typical lager smell, wheat

t. Surprisingly typical, maybe a bit of chamomile or floral taste, but no wow factor for me.

m. Mouthfeel was smooth and carbonation was nice.

o. Disappointed with the brand. There is nothing to really set this lager apart.

Photo of burnerfinger
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from the 12 oz bottle into my new belgium goblet:
A light amber pour, foamy 1 finger head setlles QUICK - leaving slim to none lacing
ultra clarity

S a bit of ABV to the nose, barely any hoppiness
T better than expected on the palate nice bitter W/O the hoppiness
M a bit dry - and very light
D very dirnkalbe, have lots.

Photo of Chiefy770
3.72/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 fl. ounce bottle. 2014 printed on neck label. Bottled on February 21st, 2014.

Poured into a Pilsener flute glass.

A pale golden body sat under a fluffy white head. The head collapsed before the lips even hit the glass, leaving a thin but modest coat of lace throughout. Like most Pilseners, bubbles were racing towards the top of the body.

Herbal hops really stand out in the nose. Bizarre notes of... I guess cornbread would be the best way to describe them are what the malts bring to the nose.

The Saaz hops are front and center taste-wise. The slightest hint of lemon peel enforces the fact this is indeed a summertime lager. Fortunately that cornbread scent from the nose does not translate to the taste. Mild notes of grain and crackers from the malts.

Mouthfeel: Medium-high carbonation. Medium-light body. Goes down very well.

Overall: This beer has a lot working for it, yet like many people in this world, the nose needs a little work. Perhaps it was this certain bottle but the scent was not very appealing, but the other characteristics certainly made up for this minor issue. It is good knowing you will have at least one good friend to spend a sunny afternoon with.

Photo of mentaltraveller
4.07/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a very good American pilsner. The hop profile is not very German tasting, but this beer gets the spirit of the style correct regardless. This is because the mouthfeel is spot-on and the hops function in the same way as a traditional pilsner-- balancing the grassy malts with a spicy but never overpowering bitterness. Another good offering from one of the greatest and most reliable breweries in the States.

Photo of Apellonious
3.61/5  rDev -1.4%
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.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.73/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked up at Trader Joe's in April 2014.

A- A blonde, or pale golden beer with perfect transparency. It's as clean-looking as spring water. Heavy carbonation surges upwards aggressively and help maintain the persistent head that remains from the finger-thick post-pour peak.

S- Has that characteristic sweet malt thickness that I find in many Sierra Nevada beers. It's almost like cornbread if I'd say, although I don't want to imply a corn adjunct was added, only that that's what the aroma reminds me of. Spicy floral hops are underneath this initial sweet aroma.

T- Initially sweet and perhaps offering some bread, crackers and/or biscuits, floral hops emerge toward the backend of my palate.

M- As mentioned before, starts sweet but quickly becomes dry and crisp. At the finish, the hops provide a subtle bitterness that is easy to not notice since the beer is so easy to sip without putting much thought towards the taste.

Photo of Scrapss
3.94/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a Turbinator style glass.

A: It is clear and an active brew with a two finger rocky, white head. Lacing is minimal, legs are not present due to moderate ABV. Crystal clear, really nice translucence.

S: Typical lager smells, a little lemony lemongrass, earthy yeast and mild malts with a little of the pale euro funk.

T: Lager smooth, hair euro-skunk due to that classic hop profile. Lemongrass, earth, skunk, Irish cream at the edges. Bitter at swallow causes pleasant dryness.

M: Moderate and pleasant in every way. Slightly creamy hit and then slick on palate leading to a lightly bitter finish.

O: Yeah, this is really darned good. Every part of this contributes to a whole that is more than the sum. A very good expression of the light Czech/lager style.

Photo of BeerandWhiskeyHQ
3.49/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clear, sparkling golden yellow
A bit of hops to the nose, slight honey sweet scents, minor malt
Light hops and of course that pilsner presence, clean finishing
Definitely a good beer, a nice change as well from the IPAs, torpedos, bigfoot, and celebration ales. Good for the summer, light and clean. I don’t always thirst for a pilsner, but when I do this is a favorable choice.

Photo of thegodfather1076
3.69/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Presentation: Very attractive eye-catching can with a great graphics in the SNBC style and tradition. Can give a bit of brewery info and ABV info.

Appearance: A semi aggressive pour from its 12oz can into a 14oz Pokal led a 2 finger white airy light head atop a clear bright golden yellow beer. Head retention was a solid 2min 55sec before fading to a thick ring and thin coating. With good lacing.

Smell/Aroma: Smell is of floral hops with hints of white wine and sweet honey. Hits of pale malts also hit the palette.

Flavor/Taste: Taste of grainy malts and floral hops on the front end with a spicy hop midpoint that turns slightly herbal. Has a very nice grainy malt finish.

MouthFeel/Drinkability: Light and refreshing with a crisp clean mouthfeel that finishes a bit dry. Very drinkable.

Overall/Comments: A truly refreshing and drinkable session beer that would go down easy on a hot summer day. Very tasty and well put together. Try it. Classified as a Czech Pilsner @ 5% ABV. Consumed 10/14/13.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.74/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint.
5.0% ABV, 28 IBUs

A - A constant stream of little carbonation bubbles rise through the center of this brilliantly clear golden yellow beer, sustaining a sparkly, foamy white that, after some time, leaves chunky, sudsy bubbles on the glass.

S - Grainy pale and smooth pilsener malts give Summerfest a fresh and classic pilsener nose, kissed by a touch of honey sweetness and hints of Saaz noble hops, which add to the beer's authenticity with slightly floral components on the finish.

T - Soft floral hops impart light spiciness and envelop the pilsener malts, gently balancing the mild sweetness that lingers in the background of this brew for a simple but true and enjoyable pilsener flavor.

M - Medium-high in carbonation, Summerfest is a light, crisp beer with a soft, clean body and delicately bitter finish. True to style, this is one easy drinking brew!

O - Sierra Nevada's nod to the Bohemian Pilsener is damn near spot-on with an overall crisp, clean drinkability and classic, simplistic flavor of honey-kissed malt and floral, lightly spicy hops balanced to perfection!

Photo of LXIXME
3.46/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thick white head slowly dies above a clear golden colored ale.

Very light citrus hops and floral aroma and the taste resembles the aroma to a T.

A clean tasting medium bodied beer with a slight dry aftertaste that keeps a bit of the taste of the the beer hanging around.

Seems like this would be a pretty good beer to have on the beach on a hot summers day, to bad it's in a bottle and that would be a very irresponsible thing to do.

Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 3,838 ratings.