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 Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPASierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,776 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,776
Reviews: 1,309
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 9.63%
Wants: 64
Gots: 110 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV: 6.7%
Beginning gravity: 14.7 Plato
Ending gravity: 3.9 Plato
IBU: 66
Malts: Pale and Caramel
Yeast: Top-fermenting ale yeast
Bittering hops: Pacific Halertau
Finishing hops: New Zealand Motueka and New Zealand Southern Cross

(Beer added by: Todd on 05-07-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,776 | Reviews: 1,309 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bluejacket74
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%

24 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours an amber/copper color with a 2 inch frothy off-white head (after a fairly hard pour). Head retention and lacing is excellent. Aroma is citrusy and piney hops, with some caramel malt in there too. The taste is similar to the aroma. It's mostly citrus/pine/grassy hops, along with some caramel and biscuity malt. There's also a nice lingering hoppy bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel/body is medium, and it's coating, oily and a bit thick with low/medium carbonation. Drinkability is very good as it's smooth and goes down nice and easy. I think this is a pretty solid brew, I'll definitely have to pick up another couple bottles of this.

bluejacket74, May 26, 2008
Photo of scottoale
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%

24 fl.oz. fat brown bomber poured into a large chalice...deep amber-copper with 1/4" of ivory foam cap. The head settles to a film and leaves some nice sticky lace, clinging after each sip.

Hoppy citrus notes upfront, some piney or spruce, and a little malty sweetness bringing up the rear. The nose is milder than I was expecting...not to worry though, I was thinking hop bomb (DIPA) for some strange reason.

Complex hop characture flavor starts sweet with citus and malt. The malt is caramel in flavor, infused with grapefruit, tangerine, mango and spruce in a near perfect balance. Bitter-sweet fruit in the finish, great flavor.

Good bit of body, moderate ABV, nice carbonation all add up to a highly drinkable and enjoyable ale that is some what unique. Will definitely enjoy this one in the future.

scottoale, May 25, 2008
Photo of BrewMonkey
3.18/5  rDev -21.5%

Pours coppery/amber with off white head that recedes fairly quickly, with some decent lacing left behind.

Aroma is suprisingly subdued, I was expecting far more hop aroma. The hop aroma smells citrusy and sweet, with more malt sweetness and just a hint of alcohol in the nose.

Despite the lack of aroma, the flavor of hops dominates everything else, creating a nearly oily mouthfeel. Something rugged about the flavor, maybe in the rush some insects were left in the hops. Bitterness levels are on par with their pale ale, maybe slightly more bitterness, but its hard to tell under all the oily hop flavor. Somewhat drying quality to the finish keeps the oily mouthfeel in check.

Fairly interesting, not really sure what I think about it after the first try though. Certainly not wowed, but not entirely dissappointed either. If it's fair to compare, I loved the other Harvest version, this one, not so much.

Edit: I try not to read reviews before I try the beer, and after reviewing this one I read mattcrill's review, and maybe I'm having the same issue with this beer, but don't quite have the palate to discern the problem....but something just a bit off with this one.

BrewMonkey, May 25, 2008
Photo of soupyman10
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%

Got this one on-tap at the Reef Bar the other night. The waitress tried to sell it like it was the second coming of beer. Pours a nice looking copper color with a smallish head on top that didn't really leave much lacing. Nose is lots of fruity hops, as is the flavor. It's not supper hoppy (the waitress advertised it as an IPA, so I was a little thrown off), but it's fairly balanced, and highly drinkable. I'm surprised it's so high in alcohol, cause it doesn't show up in the least. Feel is a little watery, in my opinion. Overall, not bad at all, although I still prefer the standard SN Pale Ale. Would drink this one if it was offered though, no questions.

soupyman10, May 24, 2008
Photo of mattcrill
2.1/5  rDev -48.1%

Let me qualify this review by saying I'm a big SN fan...that being said, this beer disappoints me.

Aroma: slightly catty and skunky. A "lager-like" yeasty aroma and a touch of spiciness. Also, a bit of DMS which is disturbing.

Appearance: Hazy brick red pour with a sticky off-white cap.

Flavor: Saltine crackers, biscuity, earthy hops, and some spicy floral flavors. A brush of alcohol but this flavor is really lacking. Just a little malt and hops and really nothing else.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with high carbonation. A bit of a carbonic bite with some lingering hop oiliness left on the palate.

Overall impression: This one is lost on me. If it's truly the S. Hemisphere hops then it looks like I'll be drinking/brewing less hoppy beers and using my good ol' N. Hemisphere hops. To me, all the "less than desirable" flavors seemed mostly malt driven (DMS, saltine crackers, etc). I'm giving SN the benefit of the doubt. Maybe they rushed this to market or I just got a bad bottle. Either way, I won't be hitting this again soon. I need to go brush my teeth with some Bigfoot.

mattcrill, May 24, 2008
Photo of Tilley4
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%

I've been dying to give this one a shot ever since I first read about its production. I love Sierra Nevada and everything they brew....I bought 4 bombers today and cracked the first one this evening....

This is just beautiful.... Its a glowing copperish hue with a thick creamy fluffy head that simply refuses to go away...Held up to the light, the small carbonation bubbles slowly float up from the bottom of the Sierra Nevada pint glass...

Upon placing my nose into the glass, I'm greeted with a piney hoppiness that seems very well balanced by a sweet maltiness... This doesn't seem to be quite as pungent as the Harvest Fresh Hop, but hell, it still smells really good.... Just a little more subdued..

Alright, this is just terrific.... Its hoppy and piney and oily and sticky but yet sweet and balanced with the malts in the background....this finishes with a nice puckering bitterness from those New Zealand hops as well...

I had to restrain myself from chugging this so that should tell you what I think about its drinkability...

Sierra Nevada, you've done it again! You guys keep churning out one terrific brew after another and I keep buying them by the truckload...between this and the Summerfest, I will be spending quite a bit of time with your brews this summer...

Tilley4, May 24, 2008
Photo of Halcyondays
4.08/5  rDev +0.7%

24 oz. Sierra bomber, shared with my dad on 5/23/08,

A: Pours a medium amber into a pint glass, with a medium cap of off-white foam, abundant sticky lacing.

S: Very floral, grass, caramel, honeysuckle.

T: On the first sip I noticed a striking difference in comparison with regular Harvest Ale. The beer starts with a much more direct pine bitterness than its brother, the difference in the age of the hops when used is clearly shown. Malt is almost brown ale dark, toffee sweet. Light amount of white grapefruit in the aftertaste which in turn is dominated by the recognizable floral wet hop profile.

M: Full of resin, very stimulating on the tongue, medium bodied, light carbonation.

D: Another very tasty and interesting beer from the guys at Sierra Nevada. My dad said, "Yeah, it's pretty good." Dirt cheap when compared with other special releases out there, I'd definitely have it again.

Halcyondays, May 24, 2008
Photo of hdofu
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%

For my 50th review, I wanted to do a special beer, and it was Sierra Nevada's porter that I first reviewed for this site. Since I've acquired a taste for hoppy ale, I had to review this beer.

Anyway this beer pour copper orange, almost a pale cranberry, with a thick white head. taste is intensely hoppy with a sweet finish. Th I detect herbal notes and noticeable malt flavor as well as sweet pine with a hint of citrus and dark bread. The beer is smooth to the tongue, slick and oily with lite carbonation. Drinkability is extremely high i you like hoppy, bitter and sweet which this beer excels at all the aforementioned categories. An excellent APA, I prefer it to their flagship APA.

hdofu, May 23, 2008
Photo of JonathanL7890
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%

Poured a 3 finger rocky head into my pint glass. Color is a light to medium amber.
Lacing all over the glass.
Smell is citrus,
Taste is grapefruit / hoppy,it seems to be just a touch bitter but there is a good bit of carbonation that seems to mellow the bitterness. Also some maltiness, bready.

Mouthfeel is awesome. The malt and the perfect carbonation tickle my tongue.

Drinkability: glug, glug, glug.... Oh, drinkability is off the charts great.

JonathanL7890, May 23, 2008
Photo of Tdizzle
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%

Purchased at BevMo! in Brea. Bottled on April 25th, 2008 and consumed on May 23rd, 2008.

A- Poured into an imperial pint glass, this beer pours a clear copper color with a billowy beige head that sticks around for quite a while before settling to a thin layer, leaving some great web-like sheets of lacing on the glass.

S- A very earthy aroma of both citrusy and piney hops with a coarse and grainy malt backing.

T- A nice hoppy bite is supported by an equal amount of bready maltiness. The bitterness resurfaces and sticks around on the palate long after each sip. The flavors are very gritty and raw, and the finish is dry.

M- A full-bodied feel with moderate carbonation. It's also slightly oily and coating from the hop oils.

D- Kudos to Sierra Nevada for brewing a Pale Ale with a 6.7% ABV, but that ensures that one 24 ounce bottle is plenty. Very drinkable all around though.

I fantastic Pale Ale chocked full of hoppy goodness. Highly Recommended.

Tdizzle, May 23, 2008
Photo of Buebie
4.7/5  rDev +16%

A - Poured a rich dark copper color, with a thick whipped cream like 4 finger head.
Thick *clumpy* lace lines my glass.

S - Smell is primarily of hops; pine, grapefruit, floral hoppy aroma with a hint of pure clover honey. The dry hopping really come through with the huge waffing of floral aroma.

T - Taste is amazing, the hops do not overwhelm. Pine and citrus with a real earthy note...not like dirt, but really reminds me of a home-brewed organic IPA. Tastes like Brewers gold, cascade, Mt Hood...
The hops do not overwhelm as the malt comes through in the middle peaks and then the dry bitter hops finish and linger.

M - Mouthfeel is thick, dry and clean, some oily hop presence. Carbonation is medium to light. The presence of the carbonation is more of an afterthought, does not overwhelm, leaving this ale very smooth.

D - This is a bit of a sip and ponder beer. I could enjoy this any time of year, but on hot dreadful days I may grab somthing a bit less filling.
I just ate a giant bowl of pho prior to reviewing, so my gut is about to burst.
I will definatly grab this again

So much better then their EPA. That fact that the hops used in this beer were picked processed and boiled in the wort within ten days on the vine is amazing. Kudos Seirra Brewing!

Buebie, May 23, 2008
Photo of ckeegan04
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%

A - Dark orange/amber color. Thick foamy light brown head. Excellent retention and even better lacing. A great looking Pale Ale.

S - Spicy hops. Also a hint of some orange in the backgroun. Dominated by a spicy, piney aroma.

T - Spicy hops, bordering on funky. I love hoppy beers but this one is missing the necessary balance from some sweet malt.

M/D - Medium bodied and very crisp. Good carbonation. A good pale ale but I think I prefer their regular pale ale over this one. Just a little too funky of hop taste.

ckeegan04, May 23, 2008
Photo of josiahschlender
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%

Beautiful amber color pour on tap from Henry's in Portland. It has a big long-lasting, fluffy white head that leaves a bunch of lacing.

Nicely hoppy aromas. This could pass for a West coast IPA. Less on the citrus side and more on the pine, grassy and spicy side for the hops. Also noticed semi-sweet bready malts. Very fresh smelling.

Nicely balanced taste, reminding me some of the regular SNPA. Bready malts are substantial, while being well balanced by lots and lots of hops. This is a pretty formidable pale ale. The feel slick and smooth. Maybe not as crisp as I typically look for in a pale.

Overall, a very tasty pint. I'm not sure what the bottles cost, but if they're a high premium over the regular SNPA, I'd try one of these just to see what you think, but stick with the excellent original.

josiahschlender, May 23, 2008
Photo of oneeye
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%

24oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A. Amber/copper with a two finger soapy head.Carbonation bubbles racing up to meet with the creamy silky head.Looks like a little oil slick at the top with lots of lace around the rim.

S. Smells of grassy/piney hops and sweet malts.

T. At first a little bitter tinge of hops.Then the taste of caramel and citrusy hops.The finish is dry and leaves a nice malty aftertaste as your taking your next sip.I think this beer has a excellent mixture of hops and malts.

M. Mouthfeel is creamy/oily with a bit of tingle racing around with a dry finish.

D. Nice beer to sip on and take your time.No hurry to finish this one.Savor the flavors and it's very balanced and easy to drink.
Notes. I love this beer.I expected to be disappointed after all the hype that was surrounding this release.It did not disappoint.

oneeye, May 23, 2008
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.9/5  rDev -3.7%

A careful pour produces a three-finger thick, light tan crown of froth that just barely exceeds the rim of my glass. The head leaves a ton of lacing on the sides of my glass as the head slowly subsides with a varied, canyon / crevasse like surface. The beer is a cellar, reddish amber hue and shows a brilliantly clear, red stained, rich copper color when held up to the light. The aroma is quite citrus like with a nice hit of candied orange peel, ample lychee and a bit of piquant citrus zest. There also seems to be something that is a bit like a old, rubber bike tire-tube; this last is a bit faint, but I can't shake it and it seems to mix in with an herbal aromatic that is a mix of grass, slight hemp and pine sap.

Soft on the mouth, despite being pretty well carbonated. The beer has a lightness to it that makes it quite easily quaffed. A touch of warming alcohol lets you know this beer has some strength, but it is almost hidden underneath the resinous hop character and bitterness that dominates the finish. This has a nice, almost buttery, malt character to it. Perhaps toffee is a better descriptor as it is certainly not diacetyl, this is also accented by the creamy mouthfeel that this beer has. The citrus hop notes are probably the most dominant flavor (though the herbal notes are right up there) and lean towards flavors reminiscent of orange zest, tangelo and grapefruit. The more earthy, green side of the hops show up as flavors of pine, bitter herbs, some touches of hemp oil, perhaps some slight menthol. This is easily described as a hop dominated beer, the hops don't reach overwhelming levels though, despite that the malt character barely plays a perceptible role here. The malt certainly contributes to the mouthfeel and structure of this brew, and does influence some soft flavors in the middle of each sip.

At first I thought this beer might be a bit too light in heft, but it quickly picked up a soft, creamy mouthfeel to it that somehow reminds me of a cask ale, despite the carbonation; I think this is a side effect of the hops somehow, though I am not entirely sure. This is quite a nice beer, somehow at first blush I would not guess that I liked this beer, but the sum of its parts definitely forms a greater whole that I am digging a bit more than I would have guessed.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

Gueuzedude, May 23, 2008
Photo of cichief
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%

Had on draft at the Frisco Pub in Columbia, MD.

A- Pours a beautiful amber color with a nice tan head.

S- Nice clean scent, hops are present but not overwhelming.

T- Very well balanced, the hops are the centerpiece, but the beer has plenty of malt as well.

M- Well carbonated, medium body, plenty of oily hops to please hop lovers.

D- A very enjoyable beer, so well balanced that even non-hop lovers will enjoy the beer.

cichief, May 23, 2008
Photo of Wetpaperbag
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%

(2008) (all 4s)
A- Nice golden caramel color, head was nice and full with excellent lacing.

S- The smell of the new hops is very strong and alive.

T- The start is very sweet and that turns into a very citrus hoppy taste. The hop taste is very crisp, and something I've never had in a hoppy beer. It almost has a very spruce/pine needle/gin taste.

M- Easy to drink, not too hop heavy. Light carbination.

D- Not too bad to drink. I'm wondering how, or if this beer will taste better if it is aged for a bit. Can it be aged?

A- Darker amber color then the 08 version. Good lacing and a thick head.

S- The hop smell is very upfront and yet subtle with a great smelling balance.

T- The taste is sweet with the hops being the star. Almost like a barley wine in flavor. I like how the hops this time are balanced in terms of nothing being too overly bitter. Not nearly as piny as it was in 08.

M- Good feel, nice carbination for a fuller body beer.

D- Easy to drink for sure

Wetpaperbag, May 23, 2008
Photo of DefenCorps
4.13/5  rDev +2%

24oz bottle poured into my Russian River pint glass

A: Amber with a thick, dense beige head that recedes leaving a nice lace. Good carbonation.

S: Earthy (reminds me of the smell of rain on dry earth) with a mild bittering hop. Hint of lemon with a mild caramel sweetness behind it all. Good!

T: Starts off with an earthy hop presence both flavor and bittering-wise. Mild caramel sweetness with a mildly bitter, dry finish.

M: A little oily (from the hops?), a hair undercarbonated but the dry finish is great

D: Goes down very easy. I've refilled this and fast

DefenCorps, May 23, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%

Pours a clear amber with a decent creme head. Leaves a fair amount of lace on the way down. Flavor is bitter in the hoppy way you'd expect. It's pretty earthy overall and a minor salt edge is there as well. Pine character is here too and I felt it showed up as the beer warmed. Carbonation bites and the liquid is typical. A nice APA. Not sure exactly why we need a year round version of this style, but that's American for you. Who cares if we need it. We can do it, so let's just do it.

RblWthACoz, May 23, 2008
Photo of MiScusi
3.6/5  rDev -11.1%

0.5L mug at Hollingshead's Deli. Pours a clear caramel color with a big rocky off-white head. Somewhat similar and maybe a shade darker than the classic SN pale ale. The smell was mildly hoppy in the earth and leafy sort of variety. The taste was divided between the caramel malt backbone and a citrus wave of hops. The finish leaves a moderate bitterness, in fact it left somewhat of a lingering unpleasant bitterness to me that I find in the SN Pale Ale also. Anyway, the taste was actually more similar to SN's other beers that all use Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook. Since this beer doesn't use any of those it surprised me how similar it was.

MiScusi, May 23, 2008
Photo of dsa7783
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%

Single, 24 fl oz bottle just purchased from Gary's in madison for $4.25...
Pours a ruddy, dark-copper, amber colored hue with rising carbonation and an impressive-sized foamy head that exhibited adequate staying power...
The nose was replete with a pepperish hint of fresh hops, slight caramel, and earthy grains...
As far as taste is concerned, this is hands-down one of the best American Pale Ale's I have sampled in a long time... A crisp, spicy, hoppy bitterness is evident in the long-lasting flavor along with a bold hint of earthy grains, caramel, and a tinge of vanilla thrown into the mix...
The pepperish, bread and butter flavor is typical Sierra Nevada style, with the brewery's usage of New Zealand hops being very assertive, and with a nice 6.7% alcohol strength to match, this is a wholesome, tasty, flavorful, easily-drinkable depiction of the style...
Certainly one of the best brews to come out of this Californian company...
Excellent mouthfeel and a teriffic level of drinkablity to match...
Great stuff...
Definitely recommended...

dsa7783, May 22, 2008
Photo of pershan
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%

Had this on-tap at Frisco Grille in Columbia, MD.

Several of my friends raved about this, so I not only bought a case of it, but tried it on-tap at Frisco. The beer poured a clear reddish-amber with a thin, rocky white head into a pint glass. Not much of a hop aroma, which was a bit strange. The taste, however, was a fantastic blend of malt sweetness, big hop flavor, building up to a clean, crisp, fairly intense, high-alpha hop finish. SN really knows how to balance the malt and hop profiles in their highly-hopped ales. A great beer.

pershan, May 22, 2008
Photo of Drew966
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%

Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Ale pours a dark orange with a thick white head from a brown twenty four ounce bottle. The aroma is fairly mild, hops are definitely present though. As the beer warms, the flavors really start to come out, there is a very piney hop character and a very smooth mouthfeel. If you are looking for floral or fruity hops, you're in the wrong place. Very enjoyable.

Drew966, May 22, 2008
Photo of geexploitation
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%

Pours with a deep red-amber color, with brilliant honeyed highlights and a head that leaves some thick lace in spite of not retaining its form very well. The aroma is certainly identifiable as an APA, but the hop character has an earthy, herbal character about it that is different from that of a lot of American hop varieties. Malts come through, too, with a big measure of honeyed sweetness. On the palate, full bitterness throughout, with bright but soft citrus elements midway through. The finish dries out considerably, and the overall level of fruitiness is low. Great mouthfeel that combines lots of hop bitterness with a substantial, balancing load of caramel malts. Overall, this is excellent stuff. Once again, Sierra Nevada proves that they really know their way around a hoppy ale.

geexploitation, May 22, 2008
Photo of ccrida
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%

24 oz. bottle poured into my Samuel Smith's Imperial pint glass, the 2008 Southern Hemisphere Harvest is a clear copper with very dense tan head that's long lasting and rocky, leaving chunky lace.

Smell is fantastic, big sweet, floral, spicy noble hop aroma, toasted malt.

Taste is very good, wow, a nice freshness, big Saaz like flavor that I love, nice citrus finish, sweet and tart, clean malt and lingering bitterness, minty belches. Very tasty!

Mouthfeel is dry and crisp, lending a lighter body.

Drinkability is high, wow. Nice price on this bigger then a bomber bottle, Sierra Nevada has the best special release IPAs in the biz, and this is my favorite of the bunch. The Southern Hemisphere Harvest is really brewed to my taste. I just had a bottle of celebration yesterday to refresh my memory, and as good as it is, I definitely like this one better.

ccrida, May 22, 2008
Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,776 ratings.