Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

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

1,335 Reviews
no score
Send samples
For Trade:
Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPASierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

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

Added by Todd on 05-07-2008

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,335 | Ratings: 2,979
Photo of Murrhey
3.36/5  rDev -17%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1pt, 8oz standard pressure-cap bottle into a pint glass. Reviewed live in high elevation Kalispell, Mont.

A- Three-finger white head with relatively low retention. Sticky white lacing and peaks in the head. It's riding atop a semi-hazy orange body with surprisingly dormant carbonation. Looks ok.

S- Bitter, slightly floral. Hoppy with a caramel malt backbone.

T- Bitter hops and malty. Some citrus notes and a good malt backbone balance out the punch.

M- Wet and medium bodied.

O- Pretty nice brew, good New Zealand hops.

 543 characters

Photo of AGDMainer
3.36/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For pure value, Sierra Nevada is tough to compete with. That being said, I have come to expect a lot with my love for Torpedo and the original wet hop harvest. Pours extremely nicely with great color, good head and very good lacing. Smell is solid with a lot of straw and earth. First sip was underwhelming. As it warmed, the taste improved but never hit a high note. Definitely a value for the price but lacking, in my opinion, in its overall flavor and balance. I like my IPAs big and that is not a strength of this brew. Well worth the price of admission but unlikely to buy more.

 583 characters

Photo of orcasteve
3.38/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

great color and great smell, but the taste just dosent do it for me, the hops are a bit out of ballance, to tingley in my mouth, the malt could have been sweeter. i think that thay just missed on this one. i am wating for their cellabration ale to come out, that is the one i judge all their products to.

 304 characters

Photo of JohnnyMc
3.38/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had the Northern Hemisphere last year and I'm looking forward to trying this for the first time.

It pours out a pretty deep amber with a good amount of orange and 3 fingers of off-white head.

The aroma has a decent amount of citrus, lemony, and piney hops along with caramel malt.

The taste is not as "fresh" as I would have thought. It's very balanced and easy to drink. There are the citrus and piney hop notes, caramel malt (though not too sweet) and a nice biscuity, breadiness too. Finishes very dry, but not very bitter.

Not a bad beer and this may not be the freshest bottle, but not my favorite either.

 618 characters

Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.38/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear copper hue with a pinkish tint. A bit of lacing is left by the monstrous head, but not much.

S - Hops, naturally. Flowers (lilies) and a tiny bit of caramel malt.

T - Initially, it is of floral hops and a bit of caramel malt (with a hint of heather). Aftertaste is a straight bitterness with a bit of lingering caramel malt.

M - Dry, a little refreshing, a tad astringent, a little harsh.

D - Pretty good. I think I prefer the northern hemisphere wet hop ale, but this is very good.

 499 characters

Photo of Damian
3.39/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Drank from a 24 FL OZ bottle purchased at Liquor World, Cambridge, MA

Poured a dark, crimson-amber with a tight, fluffy, two-finger, sea foam head that slowly faded to a clingy film. Outstanding retention. Thick rings of lacing blanketed the entire glass.

The aroma was powdery and dry initially, with a touch of malty sweetness in the background. As the beer warmed, the maltiness intensified and some citrus notes came out as well.

The taste was hoppy and somewhat astringent. The overall flavor profile however was far more subdued than I anticipated. What was quite prevalent however was an intense, stinging bitterness that lasted from start to finish. Orange peel was noticeable in the center, along with some malt sweetness. Spicy, floral hops came through as well. As the beer warmed, the hops also displayed some medicinal flavors. The finish was piney and very bitter with an intensely strong and long-lasting, herbal/medicinal aftertaste. By the near end of the glass, the astringency of the hops made the beer rather harsh and hot.

The mouthfeel was rich, creamy and silky smooth. Oily and slick.

While the 6.7% ABV was rather well hidden, I found that drinkability was hampered by the overwhelming bitterness and lack of balance in this brew.

Like the other fresh hop pale ales I have tried in the past, this one seemed to be big on hop bitterness but rather low on overall flavor. It was definitely a bit of a disappointment.

 1,445 characters

Photo of atigerlife
3.4/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber with a medium light brown head [as beer warms, head pours become much larger]. Lots of carbonation seen rising.

Aroma is of hops, grapfruit, sweetness.

Taste is of citrus hops, bitter, green wood taste or rubber, malty sweetness. Somewhat dissapointing.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and very dry.

Overall, a decent enough beer, but not anything I'll have again. Hops completely dominate w/o much other taste to go along with it.

 442 characters

Photo of chicksdiggit
3.4/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured center from 1 pint 8 oz bomber into a snifter. A lot of pressure released as I cracked the cap. Dark copper color with two fingers of thick dark egg shell white head of mixed size bubbles. Slowly receding head that leaves thick soapy lace. Thick retention, numerous streams of slowly rising bubbles across the entire glass.

Green vegetal hop aroma with toffee notes.

T: Buttery body with toffee. Dry lime hop finish that sticks to the palate well after swallowing.

F: Zippy citrus mouthfeel and a dry ginger ale type finish. A little heavy in the stomach over time and drinkability is reduced for me.

O: I'm not big into IPA's so this isn't something I'd reach for continuously. A little on the simple side for me but still well brewed.

 756 characters

Photo of Ego
3.4/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

just arrived at the local beer heaven known as Oak Tree...

big head, 2 full fingers of soapy foam white in tone, lots o' lacing, slightly murky muddy orange, retention is good as I babble on like a damn fool, a nice looking glass o' beer.

hops ? no really, roll with me on this one, fresh and piney up front with a nice undercurrent of "green" or "brown" earthy tones... like you can smell the dirt they grew in, I was going to make some geeky lord of the rings reference here but thought better of it... the malt is detectable but you have to pry a bit to find it, I suppose I should mention how fresh it smells, not fresh like milli vanilli, fresh like phoebe cates coming out of the pool... that's brisk baby!

taste etc...
smooth drinking, a bit lacking of punch I'm afraid, seems a touch thin as well, the hop flavor is nice and clean but again lacks some umph to merit a special release. am I hop burned out ? perhaps, so take the criticism with that tack in mind, really this is a pretty average APA with a slightly different hop flavor than most, the freshness of the oil gives it a unique characteristic.. but that doesn't make me want to name my first born after this beer...

verdict ?
not worth crawling through 1.5 miles of foul smelling stench but worth trying if you see it out and about.

 1,321 characters

Photo of bashiba
3.41/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a very clear copper color with a huge and sticky tan head, tons of lacing and lasts forever.

The smell is very funky, pungent, and spicy. Very hoppy in a strange way almost even a little soapy.

The flavor is suprisingly mild, a nice toasty and buiscuty malt body and some big hop bitterness, but the hops themselves seem to be lacking a bit in flavor and complexity. I get the nice malt and the hop bitterness, but just not much else from the hops other than a bit of musty basement.

The mouthfeel is a nice combination of dryness and oilyness.

Overall its worth a try, I love anything with unusual hops in it, but I felt it fell a bit short.

 653 characters

Photo of omokoro
3.41/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an a clear amber with a rich, two finger off white head. There many bubbles rising. On the nose I am picking up pine, a little lemon, pepper and a lot of malt. This is a very malty beer, not what I expected, although I have never had a beer focusing on fresh hops. I can imagine that the fact that the fact that the hops are fresh may effect the bitterness. There is little hop flavor, the malt overpowers all. It is refreshing and it does have a good mouth feel, but it tastes a bit much like a barleywine. This is one of the least bitter ales I have had from Sierra Nevada, not what I expected. Perhaps this bottle may be old or mishandled, I did by it off of a dry self from my local grocery store. Too bad Sierra Nevada obfuscates their bottle dates, I'm not in the mood to decipher their code.

 804 characters

Photo of drabmuh
3.41/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Harvest 2010 -- bottled April 23, 2010 if I understand the code correctly. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Beer is amber and hazy, forms a thin head of off white tiny bubbles that leaves a ton of lacing on the glass. Beer is moderately carbonated. Looks good.

Aroma is overall weak but its kind of piny hoppy. Not much there.

Beer is pretty thick with a nice back palate bitterness. Its not malty but it quite heavy for an IPA. Almost chewy on the palate. Its good and I believe I've had this beer for the past several years when it comes out. Definitely not my favorite IPA and I couldn't drink it everyday, but its decent.

 621 characters

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.42/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A copper amber body with all kinds of bubbles going on. Huge rocky, creamy, off-white head. Great retention and leaves sticky rings around my glass. Fantastic looking beer.

I smell some grassy and piney hops. Also some notes of caramel and toffee or molasses.

As usual, the taste follows the smell fairly well. Up front is a big sweet caramel toffee flavor. Follows up with the nice piney hop flavors. Mouthfeel is about what is expected; medium bodied, well carbonated.

 472 characters

Photo of theopholis
3.43/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance- Pours with I nice, fairly clear, amber/orange with a frothy, off-white head. The body continually, slowly effervesces, and the head leaves behind a sticky lacing.

Smell- Nice mix of maltiness and hops up front. Smells crisp and fresh. Quite inviting.

Taste- Nice mix of malt sweetness, bittering hops and flavoring hops. Just a hint of a citrus zing to it. Some pine in the jowls to.

Mouthfeel- A tad heavy for the style. It works tho, because it gives you a nice, lingering aftertaste. Yum. CO2 level is also nice.

Drinkability- Not great, not bad.

 566 characters

Photo of Gosox8787
3.43/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked a 24 oz. bottle of this the other day. This bottle was part of the 2nd release of this beer. I've never had this before so I was not exactly sure what to expect, but Sierra Nevada never disappoints.

Poured into a pint glass in two parts. The beer was a amber brown color with no haze. Only a small, one finger beige head, but there was some retention. Smell was very hoppy, pine notes in particular. The taste followed closely behind. Nice big, floral hops upfront. Citrus notes present first followed by sharp, bitter, pine notes. There was also a nice spice note thrown in, but it was slightly overshadowed by the hops. The mouthfeel was medium bodied with a good bit of carbonation. Drinkability was a little low due to the strong flavors here. i could not have more than one bottle. Moderate ABV does make it a good sipping beer though.

Overall, a good beer. Tastes more like an IPA than an APA to me. Not as good as SN's Torpedo or Pale Ale though.

 963 characters

Photo of Reanimator
3.43/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

SN's Southern Hemisphere Harvest Ale pours a clear, caramel-burnt orange color topped with an orange tinted head of foam. Aroma is dominated by spicy hops.

The hop profile is not nearly as delectably delicious as the fall release - spicy, peppery, and almost hot! The flavor really sticks on all surfaces of your mouth and lips. Whatever malts there are end up being overpowered by the sheer force of New Zealand hops.

The mouthfeel is mostly great - crisp carbonation yet creamy with hop oils - but there is a weird almost soapy astringency on the finish that might also be attributed to the hop varieties used.

Overall this Spring's Southern Hemisphere brew does not compare well to SN's utterly divine Fall Harvest release. I really want to love this beer as much as the fall release and it's definitely worth trying once, but the hop characteristics simply aren't very enjoyable for me. Bummer really.

 909 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.43/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a clear dark amber and does not have much of a head. Aroma is not strong but is pleasingly malty and subtly spicy. Flavor is quite strong and malty with a hint of cloves and a hoppy undertone with just a little bitterness. Texture is very thick and smooth, tingly and sassy, leaving a slightly biting finish.

 323 characters

Photo of beerman21
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours hued burnt orange head dipates quickly. Smell is not what i expected not much there. Hints of Pine, citrus hops but not nearly as pudgent as i would expect. Taste is subtle but refreshly clean. Pretty tastey similar to the smell but much more upfront. I was expecting something more from this brew but all in all not bad. Highly drinkable very clean dry taste. not worth going on a search for though.

 406 characters

Photo of crossovert
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2009, 2nd Release.

Pours a hazy orange-amber with a frothy off-white head. the head dissipates pretty quickly leaving some lacing and a layer of foam atop the beer.

Spell is decently hoppy, with some citrus and floral notes.

Taste has some bitter, spicy hops. These hops really seem bitter to me, but without any signature hop flavors. Maybe the hop choice in this one wasn't the best because it was limited to New Zealand varieties.

Overall it is a decent beer, but overpriced. I'm not someone who really wants to pay that much just because they went through the exotic process to make this beer.

 601 characters

Photo of NorCalYeti
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

light amber color, large creamy head, roses/estery, later on in the drink the smell was skunky/malty...and not in a good way, very smooth mouthfeel, light citrus hop character. not that imaginative a beer from sierra nevada...probably liken it to a good pale ale with less bite and weight.

 289 characters

Photo of callmemickey
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear copper-amber body... moderate off-white head with decent retention, but little lacing...

S: Soft pine, citrus (lemony), and floral notes glaze over a strong malt body which is shining through.

T: Unlike the nose, much of the hop flavors depart and do not make themselves known to the tongue. The bitterness is there throughout... but the hop flavoring is disapointingly absent... I was surprised, and after a couple sips I thought I was served the wrong beer... had a yuengling lager like taste... passed it to my fiancee who agreed that the hops were no where to be found in the flavor profile... checked with the waitress to confirm she brought me the right beer... hell, i was still unconvinced and ordered another and watched it pour from the right tap... same thing... bland... more reminiscent of the regular pale ale than anything else

M: Light-medium body, good carbonation... slightly blurred finish

D: Its good... Don't get me wrong here... this is a decent pale ale, just was expecting a bit more from a beer with high reviews, and was perplexed by the lack of hop flavoring from a beer with "harvest fresh hop ale" in the name... oh well... i'll get my hands on a bottle and give it another shot since i like just about everything else sierra nevada has done between torpedo, harvest, chico, anniversary and celebration

 1,344 characters

Photo of vfgccp
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled April 27, 2015. Opened June 12, 2015

Surprisingly dead nose. Pleasantly malt forward body for an IPA win a firm woody-bitter finish, but nothing to write home about.

 176 characters

Photo of ATLbeerDog
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful orange/red color with average head with average lacing and average carbonation. The dominate smell is crisp fruity citrus hops and mild malts. First taste is light, sweet, and somewhat hoppy. Lighter tasting than I thought it would be based on the aroma. It could use a stronger malt backbone.

 311 characters

Photo of hopoilcrazy
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

My local beer guy talked this beer up so much that I couldn't help but buy it.

A - Really nice head that is very porous and foams very high with great lacing.

S - Sour. There is also a big soapy note that comes off bad. Slight pale malt character, not getting any hops. I don't think that an IPA has to reek of hops, but some suggestion as to the hop profile would be nice.

T - Nice minerally bitterness. Very vice balance between malts and hops, both being very mild. The hop character is subdued, almost just to the bitterness, but there are some floral and fruity elements.

M - Solid medium body and light carbonation.

I was hoping that with the kiwi hops, this beer would be more complex, but the hops are a little subdued. Solid beer overall though.

 759 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From: Friar Tuck's, Savoy, IL
Date: 2013 edition, "3113215:16" stamped on bottle
Glass: Standard US pint glass

Sierra Nevada's Southern Hemisphere showcases largely bitter and herbal/woodsy New Zealand hop varieties and downplays the caramel malt base. While this is a fairly solid bitter IPA, the bitterness heavily overshadows the fruitiness or maltiness that would otherwise complement it, minimizing my interest in and the complexity of the beer. It's lacking the interesting malt and yeast byproducts as in the English style or the intense hoppy-fruitiness from the American re-imaginging. Interesting to try, I suppose, but I don't feel compelled to seek this out again.

Pours a 1.5cm tall head of beige colored foam, with above average retention lasting somewhat over two minutes. Head falls to a thin cap atop the body of the beer that remains for the entirety of the drinking session. Lacing is substantial, with waves and honeycombs of lacing adorning the insides of the glass. Body is a mostly transparent (10-20% opacity) dark amber brown color, light bringing out a brighter orange-caramel brown hue. Carbonation is visible, slighty sparse and moderately fast in moving along the sides of the glass.

Aroma is different than expected, of fairly modest floral hop scents, slight fruit-like esters, and a notable caramel malt sweetness rather than the complex explosion I was expecting. Not unappetizing, but not particularly bold or complex for an IPA with 67 IBUs and usage of Motueka hops.

Dominated by bittering hops and a floral and woodsy hop flavor, the beer does showcase the Southern Hemisphere (well, New Zealand) hops, but to a large extent avoids complexities of the malt and yeast by overwhelming them with bittering hops. Front of palate is of quite floral and woodsy hop flavors with some caramel sweetness provided by the malts and a bit tea-like. Mid-palate of earthy, woodsy hops with a mild pine resin character, a touch of grapefruit rind and fruit-like yeast esters, and a muddied caramel malt sweetness and tea-like flavor subsumed by all this. Back of palate finds strong hop bitterness along with lesser floral and woodsy hop characters and a caramel malt presence that barely makes itself known over the bitterness. Aftertaste is of spicy, sharp hop bitterness with a mild caramelized malt sugar undertone.

Beer's body is medium in weight, with medium-low levels of carbonation, leading to a soft, comfortably foamy mouthfeel that drinks easily. Closes semi-dry, with substantial stickiness lingering on the palate and lips after each sip.

 2,580 characters

Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 1,335 ratings.