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Estate Homegrown Wet Hop Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Estate Homegrown Wet Hop AleEstate Homegrown Wet Hop Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,048 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,048
Reviews: 505
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 10.58%
Wants: 48
Gots: 72 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

"Taste fresh-from-the-field flavors with this handmade, homegrown, and completely natural ale. Made with organic wet hops and barley grown at our brewery in Chico, this remarkable ale is the only one of its kind."

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-04-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,048 | Reviews: 505 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DovaliHops
4/5  rDev -3.8%

2010 version. Don't understand why it's wax dipped...Pours a clear, light-amber color with a big cream colored head that stick around for quite some time. Nice head! Scent is very hoppy! And it's that distinct hop scent that the finest Sierra Nevada brews give off. Lots of sweet malts along with a citrusy scents. Great smelling brew. The taste is very surprising...Compared to how bold the aroma was, I was expecting this to be more along the lines of tasting like a typical west-coast DIPA. I was wrong though. It's a very light IPA. The flavors are much more appealing than a normal SNPA, but lacks the kick that Torpedo has. The taste is very full of fresh hop flavor and grapefruit. Malts don't really stand out too much in this brew. The aftertaste leaves my palate wanting more hoppy goodness. Mouthfeel is light and crisp. Drinkability is high, but can't see myself returning to this beer in the future (due to how expensive it is). I'd be more happy with a sixer of Torpedo than one bottle of this (and the sixer of Torpedo is cheaper).

DovaliHops, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of nickfl
3.8/5  rDev -8.7%

A - Pours with a big three finger head, resting on top of clear, amber-brown body. The foam settles slowly and leaves thick lace.

S - Herbal pine hops with a strong malt backbone. Lots of caramel and toasted grain with a little bit of citrus hiding in the background.

T - Brown, caramel malt flavors up front with a strong character of toasted grain. Pine hops appear in the middle with some lemony notes. The toasted character darkens to light roast in the finish with strong, pithy bitterness and a note of burnt toast that lingers in the aftertaste.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - There is some nice hop character here, especially in the aroma, but the pine essence is obscured by the thick, toasty malt. There is too much dry toast and as it intensifies towards the finish it really muddles the hop character to the point that it is really nothing more than pithy bitterness in the aftertaste. This is very similar to the other harvest beers that I have had from Sierra Nevada and I am once again disappointed that they have taken what could have been a nice, hop centered beer and weighed it down with burnt toast. Certainly not a drain pour, but this really isn't something that I would drink again.

nickfl, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of Offa
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%

This is an excellent, fairly well-rounded ale with a fair amount of spicey-citrusy-earthy-medicinal hop character that taste almost Eucalyptus-like, but with a good body to balance, although rather low on the complexity front.

Deep amber, it has a smallish pale tan head, creamy, slowly shirnking to a thin, foamy ring and leaving some very nice lace.

Aroma is fresh Eucalyptus, spicey wet leaves, citrus, caramelised grain.

Taste is fairly similar, spicey wet Eucalyptus with a little extra faint, vaguely herbal element, altogether fresh & zesty, along with some citrusy (faintly grapefruity) and peppery bite. It has caramelly bread-crust sweetness underneath and nicely carrying it to a sweetish hoppy finish. Aftertaste is carmaleised toasted cracker and lingering, slightly too-strong spicey bitterness, the weakest part of the beer and bringin down drinkaiblity, extrmeley high but for this. There is not that much complexity really as the Eucalyptus character tends to dominate.

Offa, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of BretSikkink
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%

Orange color with some brown notes and highlights leaning all the way to golden. Solid, foamy lace with outstanding stick, nice legs, and a great, beery look. Citrus and herbs form the aroma, folded into a relatively sweet, but also pale IPA.

Solidly brewed, but less aggressively hoppy than I was hoping. Pale malts with just a hint of caramel form the spine, with a decently citric hop strain up front. There's also a vinous, herbal, earthy hop note that adds complexity to an otherwise overly straightforward beer. Nelson Sauvin? Summit?

Smooth and reasonably full, pretty great mouthfeel. Finish is well-rounded, not quite clean but far from bitter. While not as exciting as I was hoping, still a fine ale. I would like to know what hop varieties they use...

BretSikkink, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of SaCkErZ9
2.78/5  rDev -33.2%

Poured from a green wax adorned (which, by the way, I spent a tortuous amount of time trying to remove) 25.4oz bottle into a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass. Beer emerges clear and an amber golden color with a slightly ecru colored head of about two fingers in size.

Aroma is not as hoppy as I would have thought. I would think that the fresh hops would give a nice, hop aroma, but this one slightly disappoints. Musty and earthy hop aroma with a bit of burnt rubber.

Flavor is okay. More earthy, spicy hops in the flavor with a good malt backbone. A touch of caramel and a slight nuttiness. Hops bitterness kicks in toward the back end. Tastes kind of like sucking on a sock full of hops, grass, and Corona.

All in all, I was disappointed with this one. The idea of fresh hopped ale is tantalizing, but I have found only two or three examples of such that are delicious or offer something different than a typical, "dry hops" hopped beer. Decent mouthfeel with a nice bitterness; carbonation is spot-on. Only paid $10 for this, which is about $2 too much, if you ask me. I would choose Sierra Nevada Pale Ale over this any day.

SaCkErZ9, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%

Poured into a tulip glass from a 1 pint 9.4oz bottle. Nice looking bottle with green wax coming down the neck.

A - Pours a gorgeous bright and translucent dark copper color with some nice golden and slight amber hints. There is a nice ecru dense head with some bigger bubbles on the top. Very good retention. Almost perfect looking beer.

S - Amazing grassy and piney hop backbone. Nice hop resin that isn't too strong but lets you know its there to stay. NIce flowery hops are well balanced with a great grainy and earthy malt tone. Great smelling IPA. Nice and balanced with aromas shining on their own merit but working well together.

T & M - Starts off with a nice bready malt character that quickly is overtaken by great hop resin. The two dominant flavors work together so well that its and explosion of flavor in my palette. Nice grassy and flowery hop hints with some great fresh baked bread undertones as well as some nice earthy tones from the malt. There are very little frills to this beer, just straight up delicious hop pine flavor working with delicious malt flavor. Nice pale malt flavors can be felt throughout. It finishes dry with a great hop bitterness and some slight citric notes. Smooth and crisp at the same time with great clean flavors and a nice medium body. Very well crafted beer.

D - Drinkability is high because of the lower ABV and the fact that the flavors are presented so well. IMO this is a real gem from SN.

JoEBoBpr, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of avalon07
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a rich copper color and a slightly hazy consistency. There were two inches of foamy, long-lasting head. Excellent lacing.

S: A nice aroma of citrus, hops, a grassy quality and malt.

T: Tasted of hops, grapefruit, that grassiness, and some malt. Not a groundbreaking flavor, but it is done very well.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: An extremely drinkable beer.

avalon07, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of PicoPapa
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%

22oz bottle with green wax on the cap. Pours a deep amber color with a big thick head. Massive amounts of lacing throughout. Powerful aroma. I'm smelling some nice floral hops and a slight citrus aroma. Taste is more of the fragrant floral hops. Earthy. This is quite crisp. Overall this is a good beer but the floweriness of the hops might be a tad bit more than I care for. I think it would work better in a 12oz bottle than a 22oz. Still I do like this beer and would recommend it.

PicoPapa, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of katan
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%

22oz into a pint

A - Pours a very transparent, effervescent brown color. Strong bubbling, very strong off white head.

S - A fresh grassy, fresh cut hop note - guessing it was cascade grown in their backyard. Light amounts of sweet floral notes, and by no means too strong.

T - Starts off with a caramel, toasted malt sweetness. Almost nutty. Hops build mid-stream with some of the grassy, fresh cut notes. Finishes with a smooth grapefruit note. Bitterness lingers on the tongue.

M - Thick and creamy. Very full bodied. Carbonation backs it up, somewhat lightens it in fact. Oily finish.

D - Good drinkability for a fresh harvest. ABV is manageable. Somewhat filing at times. Flavors are very well balanced and integrated.

katan, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of LukeD23
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%

Pours a nice off amber with light light tan head

Aroma is great with notes of apricot, peach and Papaya. Hops are up front and in your face..yummy

Flavor is really solid, lots of hop flavor, Again fruity flavors of stone fruits, backed with subtle pound cake bread.

mouthfeel is perfect, full and silky

I could drink to much of this...best beer I have had from Sierra Nevada

LukeD23, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of Axic10
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Poured from 750ml bottle (green wax top) into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours amber with two fingers of of fluffy head that settles after a bit.

Smell: Earthy hop bitterness balanced with sweet malt.

Taste: Earthy hop bite, piney and sweet malts in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a resiny mouthfeel.

Drinikability: I enjoyed this beer quite a bit. I bought two bottles of this, so I'm definitely going to drink again. Price wise it could be better, but growing your own hops and barley ain't cheap. Another solid offering from Sierra Nevada.

Axic10, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of tylernim
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%

A - Poured into a pint glass. Stereotypical Sierra Nevada copper color. Good head on this one.

S - Hops come through. Floral and fruity notes follow.

T - Hops, grapefruit, pine notes. Slight booze to this.

M - Light, with some carbonation. Refreshing.

D - This is pretty drinkable indeed. Gladly downed the entire bottle.

IPAs are not high on the pecking order for me. This one surprised me a bit. I really enjoyed it.

tylernim, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of jeffjeff1
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%

I picked this up at work a couple nights ago.

Appearance- copper color, nice thick head

Smell- floral hops

Taste- floral hops

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- very good, I liked this a lot. I would definitely like to get some more of this.

jeffjeff1, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of DrMalt
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%

Drank out of a Wild Rose pint glass.

Copper Orange with a very thick head. Lots of residual lacing. Gave extra points for the bottle appearance although that shouldnt traditionally count, but a nice presentation.

Aroma was good but not exceptional.

Good flavour profile although had something different from other IPA's or even other SN offerrings. Maybe it was in my mind that I noticed it after reading how the beer was made?

Mouthfeel was excellent-draft like creaminess/mouthfeel.

Felt that I drink more of this beer at one sitting.

Was apprehensive about purchasing this beer at close to $10 bottle!

Some kind of contradictory messaging/marketing going on here. Waxed to me means a cellaring beer yet the beer is somewhat based on being of the freshest ingredients? Ie straight from the SN farm.

Not sure if I believe in the marketing strategy that the hops or barley are any better coming from their own estate?

But it is a one-off which I am slave to so I bought & wasnt disappointed.

DrMalt, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of Tucquan
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%

Had this on 2010-10-16 in Chester, CA from a 25.4 oz bottle.

A - Amber and orange with a 2-finger head and a pale creamsicle color head, which is quite unusual.

S - Pleasant but not strong aromas of pine, grapefruit and yeast. Smells very fresh.

T - Rich and complex. Plenty of grapefruit bitterness and pine. Hint of vanilla compliments the tasty caramel malt backbone. It's got a fresh, floral taste too. The sweetness and bitterness are in good balance, leaning more to the bitter side, which I quite enjoy.

M - Medium body and carbonation. Decidedly creamy and resinous.

D - Sessionable. I like this a lot. Perhaps not as much as the recent, Ghidorah but at least on par if not better than their Torpedo.

Tucquan, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of Yesac
3.8/5  rDev -8.7%

A- Orange amber hues, large off white dense foamy head.

S- Floral bouquet of wet hops, slightly toasted malts, wheat. Smells quite balanced.

T- Dull fresh wet hops with a toned down sharp bitterness and a caramel toasty malt finish. Great taste overall, but just turned down and oddly bitter. The balance is nice however.

M- Medium bodied, high carbonation.

D- Overall a great drinking brew, the caramel malts are delicious however the wet hops are toned down and contain a strong bitterness. The 7% abv is well hidden.

Yesac, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
3.7/5  rDev -11.1%

Initially poured fairly hard into a tulip, bringing a two to three-finger off white head with some larger carbonation bubbles on top. Fairly thick from the sides and clinging in a nearly-uniform pattern as the head recedes. Color is a medium, transparent copper color. Hints of a reddish hue as well.

A long sniff after a lengthy swirl reveals some muted aromas of earthy hops and a tad bit of pale malt. Second whiff reveals some more floral hops along with hints of pine. As of yet, not getting any of the citrus notes mentioned on the label. Time will tell as this one warms up a bit.

First sip is a bit mild, although it's still fairly chilled. Some of the base malt comes through with a very mild caramel flavor. Prickly carbonation on the front of my tongue and then smooth throughout. The finish is dry on the center of my tongue, although neither hop flavor nor bitterness have really come through at this point. Additionally, there's a mild, alcohol-type heat coming through, which I've grown to associate with wet hopped ales. This is pleasant and associates well with the quaint bitterness.

As the head starts to finally recede, spots of lacing dot the walls of the glass and a thin film coats the top of the brew. As it warms, both the taste and smell are still fairly muted. Much less hoppy than I would expect from Sierra, especially on their first fully homegrown ale. The taste is fairly bright and crisp, with a fairly light mouthfeel contributing just enough carbonation to carry the soft bitterness.

In the end, this is a bit of a disappointment, as I expected much more on this inaugural brew. However, this is also Sierra being a victim of their own success. I expect so much of all their beers--especially the hop-centric ones--that I can't help but wish that there was a little something more to this.

Thorpe429, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%

Nice wet hop ale, maybe without much complexity but all around is pretty pleasing, and offers a nice brewers nod to organic self-management, at least on this offering...

Presentation: 750 ml brow waxed and capped bottle. Waxing may add to the exclusive presentation, and maybe even to the idea of freshness although since this brew is typically what one should not cellar, quite the contrary, it feels as pure make up. Elaborate nature illustration on the front label, highlighting the Sierra Estate, with a small note offering a main description and highlighting its uniqueness, including symbols or organic certification. Back label expands on on the narrative of the intent and seasons, mains ingredients, and overall description. It offers an obscure batch code on the neck, and shows Alc.by Vol. (6.7%) Served in a tulip glass.

A -Medium to dark amber pour, rich head with good retention and some lacing.

S - Good nose with a hoppy sense, very fresh initial whiff with a nice range as one goes along. Resin, a bit grassy, citrus, dash of grapefruit.

T - Rich hoppy fresh range, not too hefty but rich with pine, grapefruit and even a spicy touch as it weaves itself onto the malty backbone.

M - Medium to medium-light body with medium carbonation, touch of resin, with a nice bitterness building up around the hoppy profile.

D - It all comes together in a rather nice drinking experience with a solid shine to it. Very pleasing if one enjoys how all the bitterness holds it together.

Notes: It actually has a nice feel to it, despite the marketing and the small organic and somewhat forced niche it wants to exploit, and in and of itself it is quite pleasing. A tad pretentious and pricey, waxed top and all, but one of the better seasonal single bottle offerings from Sierra Nevada I´ve tried to date.

Daniellobo, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%

Sierra Nevada Chico Estate Harvest Wet Hop Ale (2008)
Sierra Nevada Estate Brewers Harvest Ale (2009)
Sierra Nevada Estate Homegrown Wet Hop Ale (2010)
Different names. Same beer.

Autumn leaves orange with butterscotch hued highlights at the edges of the pint glass. The pour produced four fingers of bubbly foam that has an outstanding texture and is beginning to lay down a ridiculous amount of finely stippled lace. Eye candy for sure.

The nose is not as explosively hoppy as expected for a wet hop ale that isn't even one month old yet. Citrusy and herbal-earthy hops are arranged on a toasted-caramel malt base. A hint of garlic and onions make me think of Summit hops. Why doesn't SNBC release the ingredients for this beer like they do for everything else they brew?

As in the nose, Estate Homegrown's flavor is less in-your-face than it should be. Wet hops ales (which these guys invented back in the late '90s) are all about fresh, bright, green, resinous... HOPS. Sorry, but this offering tastes like a quality IPA that is 3-4 months old, not 3-4 weeks. It's enjoyable and disappointing at the same time.

The malt backbone, which is precisely the right size for the style, tastes like equal parts pale and caramel. The hops are most likely a combination of one (or more) of the C hops (grapefruit and pine) and.... something else that doesn't have citrus peel as its defining characteristic. Flavor boldness ramps up with warming and the bitterness is cumulative, although both are still shy of the mark.

Other than appearance (still great), mouthfeel is the highlight. It fits style and ABV to a 'T', while being as lush and as creamy smooth as hop mousse. Hey, that's not a bad idea.

Sierra Nevada is one of this country's finest craft breweries. Celebration Ale and Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale (to name just two) are icons that deliver the goods year after year after year. Whether it's the choice of ingredients or the decision to back off the hops, Estate Homegrown Wet Hop Ale is not destined for legendary status. $12.99 for the bottle. Ouch.

BuckeyeNation, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of bonkers
3.78/5  rDev -9.1%

I poured from a bomber into a snifter. Deeep amber pour with a thick sticky, white head. The aroma is full of pine and earthy hops. Taste follows the nose, piney and grassy. It finishes with a lingering pine, Medium in body with good carbonation. A decent IPA, IMO nothing special, not really worth the money.

bonkers, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of PDXHops
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%

A slow pour into my Duvel tulip builds an enormous frothy head that rises cloudlike above the rim of the glass. Incredible retention, loads of clumpy and sticky lacing. Great looking beer.

The nose is full of hoppy goodness, leafy and oily, green and fresh. Notes of tobacco in there as well. It's more viscous than I imagined it would be, with plentiful grit and earthiness. The malts are sweet, but nutty and tangy as well. Bitterness is more than adequate, and the leafy hop flavors linger. Light citrus notes float in and out, along with a vaguely soapy/herbal notion I can't quite put my finger on. Nevertheless, delicious stuff.

Overall impression: If your idea of a great IPA includes a mandatory citrus/pine combo, this probably isn't the beer for you. I found it to be pretty damned good.

PDXHops, Oct 15, 2010
Photo of LtCracker20
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%

Poured into my Harpoon 100 Barrel glass.

A- Pours a clear amber with a sticky 2-finger off white head that shows some pretty good retention. Looks like the lace should be nice on this one.

S- Actually reminds me of Sculpin. Citrusy hops up front. Mostly grapefruit and some orange possibly. Little grassiness in there as well.

T- Citrus hops flash by quickly followed by some bready malt flavors. Pretty balanced. Not one thing over-powers the other, but they take turns on the palate and compliment each other. Tropical fruits show up in the finish.

MF- Medium bodied. Thick enough to coat the mouth but not syrupy. Flavors do fade rather quick though.

All in all, very good. Not amazing, but another solid beer from Sierra Nevada that I'm glad I tried. Easy to drink and easy to enjoy. Again though, it kinda reminds me of Sculpin, anyone else?

LtCracker20, Oct 15, 2010
Photo of AgentZero
2.65/5  rDev -36.3%

Thanks to MasterSki aka Alex for bringing this by. Nice green wax on the bottle, didn't know SN did this.

A - An amber colored beer with a nice head that left some spots and chunk on the side and had nice drag throught the consumption of this beer.

S - Slight smell of ammonia, as well as some sort of weak dish soap, kind of reminds me of the ginger they give you with sushi. Pine hops, not particularly resiny, and a bready backbone, but it all smells a little weak.

T - Don't like this. Some sort of hops and the usual weak organic flavoring that may taste natural but doesn't take good. I feel this might be mislabeled as an IPA, reminds me of some sort of organic rice lager or something, if that exists.

M - A lower carbonation beer for something this light, although that's not horrible.

D - Not like I couldn't drink it, but I didn't really want to so after about three quarters of my glass I let the drain finish this off. It's a drinkable beer, but if I'm going to drink I'd rather put something down with better taste. The highlight of this beer for me was the nice looking wax, and I couldn't help lamenting after the fact that this bottle was a waste of good wax.

AgentZero, Oct 15, 2010
Photo of beveragesampler
4.65/5  rDev +11.8%

one of my favorite selections from SN. pours wonderful copper in color with a most impressive head. nice amount of lacing. smell is mello and very ballanced with hints of citrus and bananas. taste is smooth with a lite smokiness to it. very drinkable, you wont notice the 6.7% ABV. every sip left me wanting one more sip. i dont care for the wax dip that the bottle has. it takes a little care not to get the wax in the beer.

beveragesampler, Oct 15, 2010
Photo of MasterSki
2.98/5  rDev -28.4%

Bottle purchased from Whole Foods. Served in a Rodenbach tulip.

A - Two fingers of off-white foam that settle to a thin cap and thick collar, leaving behind spotty lace. Transparent coppery body.

S - Extremely catty and earthy hops, with a bit of pine and soap mixed in there as well. Whatever they are growing on their estate, they aren't the hops I like. The malt character is mostly biscuit and also has notes of wild rice. Not pleasant in my book.

T - Taste is bready malt and nondescript hop bitterness in the finish. Would probably impress me more if it was called an American Pale Ale.

M - Very smooth, soft texture. Medium body with pleasant active carbonation. Slightly dry and bitter finish. Nothing off-putting here.

D - I finished my glass, but I think about a third of the bomber ended up going down the drain as no one wanted seconds. If you're into the type of hop profile I described, you'll probably dig this, but I'm with Overlord on this one and want more citrus character. I guess that's the gamble with growing your own hops - if they don't turn out like you planned you still have to make a beer with them.

MasterSki, Oct 14, 2010
Estate Homegrown Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,048 ratings.