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Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,523 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,523
Hads: 3,945
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 20.44%
Wants: 106
Gots: 490 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener | 5.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-17-2001

There's something about a warm summer day that calls out for a cold glass of great beer, and this classic Czech-style lager is sure to fit the bill. Crisp, golden and refreshing, Summerfest is the perfect choice for soaking up the sunshine. Summerfest is a Czech-style lager featuring a slight malt sweetness, a spicy hop flavor, and the crisp finish you want on a hot summer day.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,523 | Hads: 3,945
Photo of Caveworm
3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., my first by these guys. Poured from the bottle into a glass, Summerfest has got a 2 finger thick head that went away surprisingly fast. Abundant lacing, though. And a nonremarkable clear, darker yellow body.

Smells like citrus and spices. Can't sense much malt or hop aromas. But I like it, as it IS quite "summer-ish". Nicely done here!

Yep, the citrus and spices show up again in the taste category. In addition to ,yes, malt sweetness and just a touch of "whole cone" hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is also well done. This brew is very easy-drinking and refreshing. Nice 'n' smooooth, my friends.

Overall a greatly earned 3.5 for Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. This is one the easiest drinking non-macro lagers I've ever had. Which is certainly not to say this brew is void of character. Quite the contrary. This is gonna be a staple in my fridge the rest of this seasom

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Photo of smythie86
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A bright golden beer, the color is very light. It really has hardly any smell. There is more of a kick than I was expecting, but it leaves a pleasant aftertaste. This is a summer beer, so it is made to be refreshing, and it was quite refreshing.

This is a good beer, I would get it for a hot day as it is better than other similar summer beers I have had.

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Photo of Mongrel
3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale gold with pure white foamy head. Smells a little grassy, earthy and musty.

As far as pale lagers go, this beer's got it all -- it's crisp, dry, chalky, lemony, with hints of grass. There's even some tangelo mid palate. Perfect balance of sweetness and noble hops, both of which are lightly done. Delicious and refreshing.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: crystal clear; bright yellow; 1/2 finger creamy white head that receded quickly to a spotty film; very little lacing;

S: bready malt; light hops; a touch of lemon;

T: lemony; a tough of hops in the finish; balanced;

M: light bodied; low carbonation; refreshing; easy drinking;

O: a nice summer beer; it'll go down fast; not complex, but it's not intended to be; a nice hot weather beer;

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Photo of PaulyB83
3.94/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Pilsner hourglass. Bottled 03/27/14

A- Pours a pale straw yellow, darker than Bud but lighter than Urquell. High degree of clarity with a big white head that quickly dissipated.

S- Nice typical Czech pilsner noble hop aroma, grassy with some slight Challah bread/communion wafer aroma. Not getting any skunkiness.

T- More noble hops since it's a Czech pilsner I'd say it's Saaz. Get some fresh baked Challah bread on the finish. A great American attempt at Pilsner Urquell.

M- Light and crisp and clean.

O- Surprised how pleasant this beer is, most American attempts at a Czech pilsner that I've had has always had an off flavor but this is clean and very similar to Pilsner Urquell. Forget your American wheats, and fruit flavor extract beers, this is what I'd like to have in the ridge at all times during the summer. Wish I could find it in cans.

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Photo of Immortale25
3.28/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a Florida Beer Co. tapered glass. Bottom of can says PKGD 040414

A- Pours a light golden color with a 3/4 inch white head that barely retains at all before popping away to a paper-thin ring around the edge of the glass and nearly no surface foam. Pretty much no lacing.

S- Crisp pilsner aroma with some light hopping and some mild bready malt.

T- Cracker-like malt flavor with a kiss of noble hops and not much else. Drinkable almost to the point of being watery. The only thing keeping things somewhat interesting is the hop presence although very distant.

M- Slightly crisp from the hops and medium carbonation. Light body.

O- Eh. Very unoffensive which wins it points in my book since a lot of the Czech pilsners I've had in the past have rubbed me the wrong way. While this one certainly isn't super satisfying, at least there's nothing there to turn me off from drinking the whole thing.

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Photo of risendragon
2.98/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

From a 6 pack bought with surplus grocery money. I've tried Sierra Nevada's Extra IPA and Winter varietal in the past and was rather impressed with both. This one, not so much so.

A- Light honey color, head dissipated quickly.

S- Grassy, hay, some floral notes, some citrus. Not as bold as advertised.

T- Similar to smell but again, not as bold as advertised. I get a nice citrusy, hoppy note at the finish and that is quite frankly this beer's only redeeming quality.

M- Crisp, refreshing, the kind of brew I would drink after working in the sun all day (if it were not for the sub-par taste).

O- I was expecting more from this brew, thus the lower scores. As a fan of Sierra Nevada's IPA styles I think I will stick to those from now on. But, this is a good summer beer after a long day's work. I guess one could call it a "starter" beer for someone looking to get into microbrews.

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Photo of SteveKay
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very nice well balanced lager. Flavorful but not with the skunkynes or bitter that you expect from a classic Czech lager. Hints of citric add a nice touch of summer. Not a lot of co2 but on a hot day you would drink it right down before it went flat. Actually pretty jazzed ab out this beer and will make it my summer session beer.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.66/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a fluted pilsner glass.

Look: A mostly clear pale yellow body with rising bubbles holds up a quickly receding white head. A film remains with thick bands of lacing.

Aroma: Malty, sweet, grassy.

Taste: A very balanced beer with malty sweetness, grains, dry grasses, then slight hop bitterness in the finish with a touch of citrus.

Mouthfeel: Dry, medium body.

Overall: A clean, refreshing beer with all the right pilsner elements.

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Photo of silverevo9
4.14/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Sipping on this beer now. This is one of the most smoothest pilsners i have ever had. No bitterness or bite at all. You just tilt the glass and it goes down fast, I mean really fast! Could easily be up to a six pack and not even know it. Hop profile is minimal. Hints of sweetness with a slight floral smell. Malts are prevalent up front and being the determining factor for flavor. Lacing is light but remains. Head from the pour is nice and thick but quickly fades. Flavor and smoothness keep me interested on this beer. Head doesn't deter at all from the beer. Medium to light carbonation for appearance sake. Overall this beer is really good. I can see myself drinking these all the time due to how smooth it is, and tasty. These are great after a hard days work, when you do not want to think of anything, even your beer.

Awesome beer!

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Photo of BB1313
4.15/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Canned on 3/6/14. 12oz can poured into a glass. Pours a light golden with a slight haze, but still able to see through it; fluffy eggshell white head that slowly fades and leaves nice retention and okay lacing. Lots of pilsener malts in the nose. Some apple and pear. Some grass. Some pepper. Some more sweet malts. Smells nice. The flavors match and are pretty bold. There's a nice subtle hop bitterness. There's an earthiness to this one. Some black pepper. Some more grass. Very subtle caramel notes. Very sharp and crisp. Mouthfeel is very nice. It's light with moderate carbonation. Very creamy and fluffy. Very smooth and refreshing. Good stuff.

This is a great beer for the hot weather. It's 90 degrees out today and this sure hit the spot. This has always been a goodie from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Bottle from Market Basket
Pours a medium straw color wit a decent sized white head that dissipates to wisps of foam on the top. spicy floral hop aroma with a light biscuity malt base. the flavor is crisp crackery bready malts with plenty of spicy hops to counter. Medium body with a moderate to high level of carbonation. Nice hoppy light pilsener beer I quite enjoyed this one.

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Photo of jjamadorphd
3.52/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sierra Nevada Summerfest - another offering from this brewer that everybody seems to like but I just haven't found that beer they make that tingles my toes. For this one I found it run-of-the-mill when it came to its appearance, although it did pour a nice head with lacing. The odor was okay as well as the mouthfeel having a decent crispness about it. The taste was definitely the best part of the beer and at least that left me thinking there's probably an offering to look forward too.

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Photo of MaltAndHopsFC
3.89/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Beautiful golden straw color on the pour. Wispy white finger of head. Nose is grassy, lemony, somewhat herbal but I'm not getting much spice. Taste is crisp and refreshing, just the right amount of hop bite to balance out the bready malt. A refreshing American lager.

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Photo of bbluemzbeer
4.86/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

appearance : pale yellow color

Smell :floral , grassy , biscuity

Taste : it has a nice floral , spice and biscuit taste with a great malt background to the finish the beer off. The beer is well balanced and made. Nice summer time beer to enjo at picnic or any outdoor outing.

Mouthfeel : medium mouthfeel and body to this beer

A well made lager with great characteristics of a European lager. If you enjoy beers like Stella Artois , Heineken try out this great beer . I highly recommend it !

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Photo of MDDMD
3.71/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A-golden color with a nice white head and decent lacing

S-cracker malt, light lemon, grassy

T-cracker malt, lemon, grass, hint of sweetness, light floral notes

F-light body with lively carbonation, crisp and clean

O-easy drinking summer beer, a solid draft lager choice

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Photo of HazelEyedHippie
3.14/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not my favorite beer. I like bitter beers as much as the next person, but this one (for me, anyway) is bitter without having enough flavor. The smell is nice, looks nice, but is just too bitter for me. I love dark beers and I love a deep, dark flavor, but I found this to be just bitter without too much taste. I definitely wouldn't want to drink this poolside in summer!

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Photo of 57md
3.81/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear straw color with very little head. The nose has distinct notes of pils malt. The flavor is crisp, clean and somewhat dry on the finish.

One of the better pils out there on the market.

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Photo of Givemebeer
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Straw golden with a white foam head that dissipates quickly. Very lively carbonation.

S: Very herbal smell. Earthy

T: Spicy, floral, earthy. Slight hop bitterness and a bit of a slight biscuity malt backbone.

M: Light bodied with a nice dry finish

O: A great Czech pilsner. Incredibly drinkable and well balanced. Would love to see more pilsners from Sierra Nevada. Spot on.

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Photo of IronLover
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bright yellow in color with good clarity. Poured with a dense white foam that reduced to a creamy cap. Fresh floral hop, grass, and light lemon zest aromas with a definitive biscuity malt backbone. Medium bodied with assertive, refreshing, palate cleansing carbonation. Fresh, light citrus hop flavor up front that quickly transitioned to floral and tangy, lightly spicy hops through the middle. Strong biscuity malt backbone throughout. Spicy hop flavors quickly subsided at the end as this finished crisply and dryly with a lingering biscuity malt and hop bitterness.

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Photo of BeerWizard
4.11/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've seen this around for years and never bought it because I thought it was just a pale ale or something. But I found out it was a pilsner in the off-season, and I've been addicted to pilsner lately and was excited to give this a try.

Very active with the first pour; took about three pours to get it all into the pilsner glass, where it bubbles like crazy and still has about a half inch of head after a good five minutes. Golden colored and clarified, looks tasty.

Nose is zesty and spicy. Pale citrus notes, malt and hops. Every time I put my nose to the glass I have to taste it, and I'm pretty in love with this beer. Tastes refreshing, leading in with soft malt, finishing with a zing, and leaving behind a very light bitterness at the back of the tongue. Smooth, easy drinking and satisfying, with nice carbonation.

Overall, I could see myself drinking quite a lot of these. I normally drink IPA's and Belgian styles but I do like to have a good lager on hand, and this one fits the bill quite nicely. Win.

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Photo of Redneckwine
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz frosty cold can into pint glass

Appearance - Pale straw yellow, bubbly carbonation, nice fluffy white head and good retention

Smell - Spicy/floral hops and crackery malt

Taste/Feel - Big hit of those floral/spicy/grassy hops up front, trailing off with bready cracker like malts, feint sweetness, and a little wallop of bitterness. Balance is stellar with this brew. Body is light, carbonation is gentle with a creamy feel. Hop bite is actually fairly pronounced and adds nice complexity and interest.

Overall - This is such a great Pils, and what makes it is it's balance between the hop bite, malt sweetness, and creamy feel. This one is perfect for a summer day or hell, any day. SN killed it with this one and I'll definitely be bummed when it's gone for the year.

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Photo of mjurney
4.4/5  rDev +19.9%
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.

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Photo of Beric
4.04/5  rDev +10.1%
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.

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Photo of Foyle
4/5  rDev +9%
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.

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Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 1,523 ratings.