Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

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3,645 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,645
Reviews: 1,480
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 12.84%
Wants: 65
Gots: 262 | 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
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Ratings: 3,645 | Reviews: 1,480 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of joshuadlight
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is just fine for what it strives to be. A drinkable pale yellow fizzy summer beer. It is a much more tasty and flavorful substitute for a Budweiser or a Miller Lite. Plenty of Pilsner flavor and smell, a bready bitterness that comes through. Nothing spectacular as none of the flavors jump out at the drinker, but it is solid in every respect and I recommend it as a summer beer to drank outside in the hot weather.

Photo of Jason
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown shorty bottle, no freshness date but there is the year 2009 on the neck label.

A- Quick to froth a white head, subsides to a thin but sticky lace. Shimmering clarity off of the golden yellow colored brew.

S- Clean fresh cut hay, spicy hops ... a very clean nose.

T&M- Crispness is beyond belief, so refreshing. Clean but dry malty palate, hint of lemon in the spicy hop character that lends a nice bitter bite. Touch of herbal hop and grain husk middle to end, finishes quite dry.

D- Give one of these to a macro drinking friend and see what happens. I could easily go through a few on a hot summer day.

Photo of Chuggs
2.78/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Overall an average beer. Poured nicely with a light, thin frosting that disappered rather rapidly. Aroma nice, althhough. I was overwhelmed with a bit of wheat. Taste was average, for some reason I was expecting a blonde ale. Good beer to go along with a fried seafood dish. Not a sesion beer. Stick with the pale ale. I am still searching for that perfect summer ale.

Photo of Duhast500
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the tap into a pint glss.

The color is a light gold with a nice thick foamy white head and some really nice lacing. No retention as well.

The smell is a bit grassy, floral hop flavor with some nice citrus flavor includeing some lemon, and orange.

The taste is a bit like a pilsner. some slight traces of hops, with a nice grassy flavor with some orange flavor as well.

The beer is nice and smooth, has a bit of a buttery feel that seems to just slight down after every sip. One of the better Summer beers out there.

Photo of glid02
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a six-pack at Green's on Buford in Atlanta.

Pours a perfectly clear straw color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes fairly quickly into a wispy layer on top leaving light lacing.

Smells of sweet malts with a good deal of grassiness. As the beer warms light floral hop aromas waft out.

Tastes good. Sweet malt flavors up front are joined by grassy flavors that toe the line of being overly flavorful. Light floral hop flavors join in midway through the sip before a clean and mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It has a solid thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing the bottle and killing the six-pack won't be a problem.

Overall this is a solid selection for hot weather - it's got enough flavor to enjoy while not going overboard. Worth a shot.

Photo of TroyS
4.85/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I got this years Summerfest at MarCellar's in Idaho Falls, Idaho. It's a really great brew with nice smooth overtones. Yum yum. Some hints of banana. This brew is very clear and doesn't have much head to stick around. It's really really good beer. Go get some! Cheers! PlS. I'll have to add a pic later - saving bottle;)

Photo of hdofu
2.4/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

I guess I just don't like this style at all because it was one of the worst beers I have ever gotten from sierra nevada and I'm not a fan of there flagship apa either. The best way I could describe this brew is imagine an ideal coors. The color was pale yellow. The smell reminded me of olive oil and the taste was rice cake like blandness. The mouth feel was slick and oily. I could not drink more then one of these. Drinking it ice cold out of the bottle only barely made it drinkable.

Photo of ajr24
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured aggressively AND appropriately into my Sierra Nevada pint glass.

A- Pours golden and hazy, but upon settling it is clarity galore. Light from anywhere penetrates this bright, golden body. An all white head slithers down the glass leaving no lacing.
S- Smells like Czech hops- spicy and grassy primarily. Slight malt sweetness follows.
T- Surprisingly complex! A very light and transitional malt profile... The Munich malt is actually noticeable- not ALL Pilsner malt taste. The Saaz hops are delicious.
M- The mouthfeel is alive and very refreshing.
D- This beer drinks astonishingly quick!

Photo of Doomcifer
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a straw-like color with a decent head that goes quickly. Smells mildly earthy hoppiness and maybe some breadiness going on. Tastes of more earthy thin hops and a light malt evening out. Pretty crisp and kind of a "dirty" pilsner imho. I bought a sixer, thinking it would be a good accompaniment on a hot Sunday cookout but I wasnt enjoying them too much. Decent at best.

Edit: 4/27/14 : I've come along with this beer. Better than I remembered and quite enjoyable session-wise.

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

Photo of patobandito
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Im not usually a pilsner fan, but I like to try whatever seasonals come my way.

This beer poured a clear yellow color with a this frothy head. not much lacing, but the head lingers for a while. Smells of crisp hops with a slight hop balance. And the taste! so crisp! So refreshing! a bit more on the hops side. Goes down oh so easily, making it great as a session brew. Highly recommended on a hot day. The perfect summer afternoon beer.

Photo of Kromes
3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a straw yellow with thick fluffy white head. Good carbonation can be seen in the glass. Good clean crisp hop and malt aroma. Nice crisp malt backbone with a large earthy hop flavor and bitterness. The malt flavor ends and only the bitterness remains in the finish. Good mouthfell and drinkability.

Photo of brow1901
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Crystal clear bright golden straw color. Fizzy bright white head, the head is gone before you can say summerfest. Zero retention and no lacing. Not a pretty beer, I've seen better looking bud lights.

S- The smell isn't overly inpressive either. Very earthy tones for a pilsener, some yeast scents that remind me of a saison. No hops, very light malt hints.

T- Nice taste though, again the yeast really reminds me of a belgian. Very enjoyable. The malt adds a faint sweetness that is washed over by the perfect amount of hop bitterness.

M- Light and bubbly, nice mouthfeel. Doesn't leave dry but not overly wet either.

D- Pretty drinkable, especially on a warm summer day. A decent session beer too.

Photo of david131
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A clear yellow beer with a lot of streams of carbonation that keeps the white head well retained.

S- Biscuit malt, and sharp hops. Clean and simple without being skunky.

T- Slightly biscuity with a slight fruitiness and some nice clean hops. Not nearly as sharp as most Czech Pilseners.

M- Extraordinarily clean and not sharp like many beers of this style. It has an almost creamy aspect to it and a great carbonation level. Very well done.

D- An enjoyable session beer and a nice take on the style. This goes down easy and is smooth.

Photo of GreenCard
3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 2009 release...

Appearance: pale yellow to light gold, sparkling clarity, sudsy white foam that collapses to a thin film

Aroma: very light perfumey scent of wild flowers honey and grain husks

Flavor: light malt profile with a hint of elderflowers and fresh-cut grass; slight citrusy note before the semisweet dry finish with a mellow hop bitterness

Mouthfeel: light body, sparkling effervescence, crisp texture; refreshing

Other comments: A very clean lager with a gentle, summery personality. If it was a woman, it would be a quietly beautiful girl-next-door that you would frollick through a field of flowers with (but not one you marry).

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.

Photo of yuenglings
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Has a very foamy head that stays around untill ya finish the beer and it leaves some good laceing. The color is a very clear light golden yellow.

S: Thers is a strong sweet grainy/grassy smell up front with some lemon or citrus in the back ground.

T: Slightly sweet grassyness up front with some sour ness at the end.

M: Good and smooth with a good lightness to it. Good carbonation , it leaves your mouth slightly dry but still a thirst quencher.

D: This is a very drinkable summer beer with a good taste that i would buy agian and i could see me taking this out on the golf course for sure.

Photo of bsp77
3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Pilsner glass.

Appearance: Bright and clear gold. Very active but not much head.

Smell: Primarily smell Saaz - pepper, grass, floral and some bitterness.

Taste: Peppery hops and relatively dry malts. More spicy than bitter at end, although there is some bitterness.

Feel: Medium body and carbonation, semi-dry.

Drinkability: Fairly mild and balanced Pilsner. Easy drinking.

Photo of BarrelO
3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Clear golden body. Big frothy head, but it quickly fades.

S: Crisp hops with a bit of malt. A few skunky notes.

T: Big bready maltiness merges well with clean hop bitterness. Very refreshing.

M: Light and crisp. Nice carbonation.

D: I wish this was a year-round offering. It's not jaw-droppingly good, but it'd be nice to have more quality pilsners widely available.

Photo of philipquarles
3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. Pours clear straw yellow with a small white head that disappears quickly--a bit like a macro. Smells lightly of citrus initially, followed by sweet graininess and some grassy hop notes. The hop character is stronger in the flavor, giving it a mild bitterness overall, with the grainy malt bill in the background. Light body with medium-high carbonation. Pleasant overall.

Photo of Magpie14
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pale yellow with light and clear golden hues. This beer seems to get lighter and lighter as I tip. Bleached cap is in a good sudsy way with just a slobbering or two of lace

S: traditional Czech hop pilsner smell with a touch of lemons, maybe. Not much else in this. Maybe a whiff of fresh farm cut straw and hayfields

T: cooked grains push through as the base and this allows a bitter hop snap with a crushed peppery bite, somewhat sullen at times. I always associate summer beers to have a fruity character, this is just a good American version of European Pilsner. Hop flavors pull more at herbal notes after a few gulps. Not much else to mention

M: light, dry, crisp, and spicy. Holds a footing in the light summer type body with plenty of carbonation

D: summery in the sense of a "super good" lawnmower beer

Photo of Brenden
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Decided to try this from the bottle since I've had it on tap and I was in a "pilsner labeled as a lager" sort of mood. It's not a mood I have often, but this one fits the bill when it does hit. It's...pretty much exactly the same.

It's a pale golden color with some carbonation activity evident. A pure white head diminishes after a few moments to a lacy foam that sticks thinly in a few patches.
There's that grassy aroma that I like, very earthy, with clean hops and a spicy nip. Good, but a bit light.
A little bit stronger malt comes out in the taste. Hops bitterness bites up front and cooperative efforts from lemon, grains and spice add to a nice flavor and balance.
I've rarely had a beer with such a crisp mouthfeel. The body is light to medium and carbonation is at an optimal level.
This is nothing fancy or spectacular. It's just a good beer.

Photo of biggred1
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale gold with a rocky white, fluffy head that sticks some lace on the glass. Saaz hops and munich malt with doughy grain and lemon rounding out the smell. Tastes of toasted grain with a fresh dose of euro hoppiness in the mostly clean finish. This tastes like what I would imagine a really fresh, real czech pils would taste like. Smooth with a light mildly creamy body and seltzery carbonation. A really nice beer and an underappreciated style.

Photo of djeucalyptus
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a crisp summer lager it says.

a crisp summer lager it looks. pours a light hay hue with tinges of lemon and butterscotch candy. a fairly nice two-finger creamy and surprisingly thick head has fair retention and leaves behind acceptable yet uninspired lacing.

smells like what I'd imagine summer crispness would smell like. some grainy notes mixed with ample traces of fresh green euro hops (sazzy?) and some interesting fruity notes - somewhere between and apple orchard and a pineapple grove. interesting.

tastes like crispness. okay... not really that crisp. grain hits up front, with a bit of cereal grain funk, then some crisp hops and nice citrusy and appley notes come in and help out. As it warms, the flavors take turns dominating. I can't quite pick out one strong leading flavor. which I'm okay with. interesting zippy tropical notes make their way through.

mouthfeel is clean, crisp, and refreshing. oh wait. this is sierra. hmm... medium bodied, smooth, ample carbonation gives just a bit of prickly pop to give body and help hammer home the subtle hops. a touch drying on the finish.

All in all, I wouldn't turn this one away. There's a time and a place for a good lager, and I guess this comes close to fitting the bill. Sits ahead of many euro pils out there in my mind, but i still can't quite call it impressive, as it just leaves me feeling like I missed something. Drinkable, sure. but there are other more striking pilseners out there.

Photo of Lambstrong
4.08/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a light golden color with a white head. Th head dissipates rather quickly, however the lacing is decent.

Aroma: Slight lemon aroma with a wiff of hopiness in the background.

Taste: Right away I tasted roasted grains followed by hops. There is a mineral quality to this beer that I normally associate with german lagers. I also picked up on a slight fruit notes. Very refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Good amount of carbonation which I like in lagers. Not heavy at all, but there is a chewiness to it.

Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 3,645 ratings.