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30th Anniversary - Grand Cru - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
30th Anniversary - Grand Cru30th Anniversary - Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

761 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 761
Reviews: 463
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.72%
Wants: 38
Gots: 187 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: GratefulBeerGuy on 11-04-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 761 | Reviews: 463 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beancounter

New Hampshire

3.25/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Amber to ruby. Gentle pour yielded a 5 finger head that stayed and stayed. Decent amount of carbonation.

S-Flora hops, mild sweet malt.

T-Hop bitterness with some oak at the end. That's it.

M-Medium...but a bit thin for this style.

D-All I'm tasting is hop bitterness. My mouth feels cottony. It has a very boring one dimension flavor that I'm loosing interest in quickly. After tasting such great beers like Celebration, I was expecting a lot more from the anniversary series. Chalk it up to another big beer selection not to waste my money on.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2011 18:16:49 | More by beancounter
Photo of ngeunit1


4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a bright fairly-hazy amber-red color with a finger of frothy tan head. The head has very good retention and laces nicely on the glass.

S - Aroma is full of lightly roasted caramel malts and pine/grassy hops. There is also a very nice amount of oak elements in the nose. Just a touch of booze present.

T - Starts off with some nice oak flavors and lots of sweet roasted malt. There is also some citrus and pine hops. Touch of fruit esters. Through the middle some smoke flavor alongside some citrus hop bitterness. The finish is a blend of the malts, the oak, some fruit esters, and a touch of bitterness which linger nicely. Just a touch of booze evident in the taste.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate lively carbonation. Slightly thick, but still very smooth mouthfeel. Nice finish.

D - Very drinkable. Lots of flavors really mix together nicely and stay very balanced. Nice blend of hops and malt throughout and the oak flavor is really nice.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2011 02:45:31 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of ptykozoon


3.75/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice dark cherry color. Nice lacing, murky, creamy cap.

Hops and then some chocolate stout influences.

Hops are at the forefront, but there are very nice undertones in this as well. Vanilla, caramel, cherry, spices, yum.

There is a bit of dairy in the finish. It's an interesting beer.

Glad I picked this up.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2011 23:43:41 | More by ptykozoon
Photo of Radiodred


4.78/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I loved this beer. This could be an everyday beer for me. A beer with some back bone but not to harsh on the palate. Great blending job. I am usually not a big fan of a barrel age and fresh beer blend but this one is doing it for me. It looks like a fresh beer and taste like a rainbow of beers. The wood and hops come through in a perfect blend. It smells delicous like wood and hops and mouth feel is not viscous and well carbonated. Cheers.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2011 00:12:20 | More by Radiodred
Photo of CuriousMonk


3.68/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber (no date) into a pint glass. Pours a dark caramel-brown color with a huge foamy orange-beige head that lingered and produced good lacing throughout. The aroma was bitter with pine, raisins, grapefruit, brown sugar and a touch of wood. The flavor was bitter with moderate brown sugar, strong grapefruit and light piney resins and floral hops. Underneath were notes of wood and smoke. The finish was long, dry, and lightly bitter with lingering grapefruit, brown sugar and wood. Fairly full bodied with decent carbonation throughout. I can vouch that this was a marriage of Sierra Nevada's three most acclaimed ales: Oak-aged Bigfoot, Celebration Ale, and fresh Pale Ale blended together and generously dry-hopped throughout. An interesting brew, but not one I will seek after.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2011 22:44:58 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of THECPJ


3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:
Thanks to deadterry for the share:

Appearance: amber red brown with a 2 finger white head

smell: hops, malts, hints of vanilla / brandy

taste: sweet upfront with a bitter dry finish

mouthfeel: mild carabontion, medium body,

Drinkability: glad I was sharing this bad boy don't think I could of drank the entire 750ml on my own.


The cpj

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2011 18:16:14 | More by THECPJ
Photo of malty


4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This baby's been in my dark, frigid garage since purchasing before Christmas 2010. I'm elated to finally have an afternoon with nothing ahead of me to give it a formal review. I remember totally enjoying it (along with several other fine ales) the weekend before Christmas with a dear friend. Let's see how it fares with a couple months of age and a complete sober mindset.

Poured into my old school thick walled, stemmed, dimpled Coors chalice, courtesy of Goodwill back in '02 for $1. After letting this beauty settle for over 5 minutes, I'm gazing into a deep and brilliantly clear sunset orange with a ultra dense (almost Guinness-like) 1" off-white head. There's a completely undisturbed 1/2" ring of lace that clings to the glass that occurred after the heads settled. This is a gorgeous, almost monumental, looking ale.

Holding the large surface area of the ale directly underneath my nostrils, there's a flirty amount of hops hiding underneath this thick, creamy head. I swirl my chalice several times to awaken this sturdy fellow. A slight oakiness emits, while the earthy hops creep slowly upward. This isn't a hop explosion of scents, but more like a 'come and get me' provocation. Okay then...

Mmmm... The hops and warming, hearty malts make for a firm handshake right out of the gate. Letting this elixir slowly glide down my gullet, the oaky barrel aged Bigfoot gives me a full-bore bearhug. Not the kind that suffocates, but more like the kind that lifts and warms. I'm feeling some Bigfoot body heat for sure. The Pale Ale and Celebration Ale blend makes for a perfectly balanced hoppy, big beer experience. The hops and the heavy malt bill really do balance-out nicely.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and perfectly carbonated, with ultra fine bubbles and a creamy, silky texture. The finish is semi-spicy and full flavored with oaky-vanilla and chalky hops.

Drinkability is very suitable for a 30F sunny winter's afternoon. When I first had this over the Christmas holiday, it was very delightful fireside as well.

I thoroughly enjoyed this beer a couple months ago, and still do today. The blends of their 3 signature hoppy beers work magnificently together. One could say it tastes like a tamed-down, yet ultra creamy slightly oak-aged Bigfoot. The oak-aged element of this beer isn't overdone, but it is at a tastefully noticeable level. A tad boozy, but very balanced and so creamy smooth. Deliciously dangerous. I still have 2/3 of the 750ml bottle to go. I'll be definitely enjoying this for the next hour (or so). Simple pleasures at their finest.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2011 19:43:52 | More by malty
Photo of Zorro


3.68/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear read colored ale with a tall red colored head.

Smells spicy and hoppy with a little soapy scent. Cedar pine and caramel are the strongest scents. After this warms up more coconut and a little chocolate show up. Finally some clove cinnamon, but very faint.

Starts out neutral to bitter with no aftertaste. Vanilla, butter and woodiness come next. That is pretty much it except for a strong bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good.

OK drinkability but this did not wow me at all, it OK.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2011 02:58:46 | More by Zorro
Photo of hdofu


4.22/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a blend of ales this beer marries blending the 3 beers that sierra nevada is most noted for into one amazing entity. This beer pour dark reddish brown with a off white head. Smell is like a field of hops. Taste gets complicated with a bold hop taste but with traces of other flavors like spice and wood chips. It is also impecibly smooth. Overall if you are looking for a good beer you may want to try this one .

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2011 07:00:28 | More by hdofu


4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a pint glass

Appearance : medium dark amber color great head formation and retention

Smell : hops galore pine and citrus notes come through

Taste : the barrel ageing I notice first great ipa taste fresh hoppiness and great malt sweetness

Mouthfeel : medium to heavy bodied hardly notice the 9.2 abv

Drinkability : massive drinkability imo I just love this style of beer

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2011 23:59:38 | More by BUNZILLA
Photo of Scotchboy


4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml, corked and caged, split with a good friend.

Pours a deep dark amber, not quote ruby. The lacing on this beer is awesome and the huge rocky off-white head won't go away. Looks great.

Smell is pretty good, I was hoping to pull more out on the nose but there are still nice hop notes, mostly floral notes with some citrus, sweet carmel malts, fruity esters. Perfume-y and very sweet.

Taste is BIG, very barleywine-ish with a more subdued hop presence (my bottle is at least four months old, so I was expecting that). Very sweet and bready, with tons of malts and an impressive amount of hops still. Very candy-sugar sweet, almost cloying at the end.

Coats your whole mouth like a thick oil. Feels 'big'.

The floral component adds to the nose and the palette, but by the end of this 750 my friend and I were wishing we had had one more person to share it with.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2011 16:34:36 | More by Scotchboy
Photo of ToasterChef


4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from my notes. I realized recently that I never posted this review; I had this beer at the Great Lost Bear's Sierra Nevada Anniversary celebration event in November 2010.

A: Pretty ruby liquid. Egg shell foam with some good lacing. Inside the glass it looks still; there's no rising carbonation.

S: Oaky malts and pine hops. A touch of alcohol. Caramelized candi sugar sweetness.

T: Tastes very much like a blend of it's three components. So interesting! Very malty and hoppy. Bitter pine hops, a little citrus. Somewhat oily. The malts are one the darker and sweeter side. The sweetness is sticky. Long after I swallow, a powdered chocolate flavor appears. The ABV is fairly well hidden.

M: Full bodied. Hops provide a lot of tingle--makes up for the low levels of carbonation. Big sweet and bitter coat. No burn from the alcohol.

D: I am really enjoying this beer. I would drink a whole 750ml bottle of this easily, except that it is so good I want to share it with others. Sure it is strong and hoppy, but it works very well. After it is gone, I am going to miss this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-03-2011 17:47:54 | More by ToasterChef
Photo of jeffjeff1


4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My wife picked this up for me at her work.

Appearance- dark amber color, thick foamy head

Smell- sweet smell like fruit, spices

Taste- malt, spices, sweet flavor

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- I thought it was pretty good. I would love to have it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 21:06:23 | More by jeffjeff1
Photo of StJamesGate

New York

4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich cherry amber with a big fluffy ecru head that cratters. Christmasy nose - orangey, spicy hops. Cherry liqueur and Amaretto malts with big resin and orange liqueur hops. Stingy end - a bit of tar? - and a very tight linger. The full side of medium, sticky and round.

A big hoppy meal of a beer, and I'm happy enough to have it. But is this blend of Celebration, Bigfoot and SNPA any better than Celebration on it's own? Where's the wood? Is there any sense in the cork and cage (and the price tag) if this is not going to age?

A nice ale (barleywine??) without a purpose.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 20:14:44 | More by StJamesGate
Photo of HalfFull


3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a New Belgium globe glass from your corked 750 ml. bottle after opening with a boisterous pop. Nearly cllear and ruby brown in color, with a half inch of creamy light tan foam which looks almost nitrogenesque. Offers good retention and lots of artsy lacing as a result.

Barleywine notes are prominent initially with some creamy hop notes largely keeping the alcohol esters at bay. Some sweet caramel reveals itself with a little air, lightly softened by the oak. A rather pleasant aroma profile overall yet not overly complex either, but then quite well balanced at the same time.

Creamy nature carries into the taste of this brew. A light hop bitterness along with some oaked caramel characteristics and a bit of that Celebration spice. Barleywine notes become more tempered in the aroma and taste with warming. Shows a biit of citric sweetness and offers a velvety smooth feel. An interesting blend.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 06:22:54 | More by HalfFull
Photo of mempath


4.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

though 'different' in style, this is as impressive as nugget nectar and sublimely self-righteous....beautiful to gaze at, lacing like a striptease, nose of sweet mincemeat and dried marinated dark fruits...taste is a hop blast tempered by a more level-headed brother-in-arms...the battle continues due to incredible mouthfeel...not thin like a barleywine, but just as heavy handed...yet smooth and chewy...the abv is hidden, so this is drinkable. and drunkable. yow.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 03:47:05 | More by mempath
Photo of cdkrenz


3.6/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Red body topped bya medium tan head standing over three inchaes tall at first pour. Head is frothy and foamy with solid stamina hanging in very well at two inches. The body is clear and offers some transparency.

S - Modest citrus aroma witha floral hint and a nice sweet edge.

T - Tastes like a barleywine with a spicy hint. It has an after taste of biting hops while most of each pull is spicy and somewhat bitter.

M - The feel is nice and warm with a moderate coarseness on the middle of my tongue. It leaves a nice sticky feel on my lips and gums.

~ This is listed as an American Strong Ale, which I guess would fit pretty much any American beer once it surpasses the 8.0% ABV mark. But in this case it really has more of a barleywine styling. Either way I like the brew and appreciate what Sierra Nevada has done with it.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 02:32:36 | More by cdkrenz
Photo of Duhast500

Rhode Island

4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Dogfish Head tulip glass.

The color is a slightly hazy amber with a few bubbles from the carbonation. Two finger of foamy off-white head ans some thick lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a bit hoppy at first, some malt flavor comes in and smooths things out till there is a balance that pitches back and forth.

The taste is all hops at first with a punchy barlywine flavor that hits late and slides things down toward the end of this beer. The handlebars seem like they're a little loose. If you are steaming into what appears to be a hop outlet it turns to a malt bomb and pushes things in a whole different direction.

The feel of this beer as a smoothness at times that really baffles the best of, there is a smoothness that is giving off many rungs of flavor as well as some young fighter in the back that holds true till the end.

This is a beer that commands both hands be holding the wheel, it also entices you to relax a bit as well.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2011 06:11:20 | More by Duhast500
Photo of willjschmidt


4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary glass.

A: Pours a dark ruby red with a thick tan head.

S: Quite a bit of hops, a bit of oak, and some malt sweetness.

T: A very interesting beer. As a big fan of both beers, I can taste the Bigfoot as well as the Celebration. I do believe that the Pale Ale gets overwhelmed by the other two bigger beers. The malt base is caramel and slightly sweet. A smoother version of Bigfoot. The hops are big and powerful, definitely get the Celebration hop profile here.

M: Smooth, medium bodied, active carbonation.

D: I really enjoyed this one. Basically a smoother, hoppier, version of Bigfoot.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2011 03:34:00 | More by willjschmidt
Photo of rye726


3.38/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok Sierra Nevada, next time instead of wasting my time and money, you can just bottle BA Bigfoot and we'll call it even.

Had no intention of trying this, or any of this series for that matter. Sierra Nevada's agenda seems to have gone from brewing good beer to marketing over priced, sub par products. Their only decent beer these days is Bigfoot.

But this was knocked down from $15 to $10, so I gave it a try. However, had this beer been $10 originally, it would still be over priced. There is no reason this should cost more than $7 or $8.

However, this is one of the best looking beers I've seen in a long time. Dark reddish brown with a silky beige head. Excellent lace.

Nose is a mostly uninteresting blend of hops, malt, booze and oak. As is the taste. Medium body drinks well enough. Simple, lacks innovation.

Lacks complexity, they should have barrel aged the whole blend. I doubt they barrel aged anything, seems more like oak chips.

Low pour, as were all the other bottles I saw at the shop.

Sierra Nevada used to be cool when I could get freshy bottles of Harvest for $3. Now they kind of suck, except for Bigfoot of course.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2011 04:35:55 | More by rye726
Photo of mdcrouser


4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Cage, cap, and an easy cork - good thing, as I didn't have much patience for waiting.

Deep ruby red and light brown, with full four fingers of head, capped by frothy tan head. It clings to the sides of the glass - like it fears falling to the bottom of the glass.

Dark fruit, some citrus, and just a stir of alcohol on the nose. Oddly, it's subtle for as big as I'll assume this beer will be.

Huge, but restrained. Warming and juicy. The breadth of Bigfoot, the hoppiness of the Pale Ale, and the undercurrent spices of Celebration.

A good mouthride, each beer standing out individually, but combining together to create a beer all its own.

A good drinker, especially on a cold winter's night - a slow sipper.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2011 03:27:10 | More by mdcrouser
Photo of racer2k


4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a brandy snifter

A: Beer pours three fingers of head with a creamy pancake colored batter that produces lots of carbonation. Head retention is exceptional and the color of this beer is a golden copper color leaving plenty of lacing around the glass.

S: A nice dose of hops, caramel, dates, bubblegum, toffee and an oak aroma to the beer. You would never know that this is a combination of Celebration Ale, Bigfoot and Pale Ale based on the initial smell.

T: Very complex taste with a forward citrus hop presence, dark fruits, clove and burned sugar. There is a moderate hop presence to this beer but what stands out for me is a distinct oak flavor which permeates throughout the taste profile. There is also a moderate alcohol warming presence.

M: Moderate carbonation with a sticky viscosity to this beer. There is a distinct creamy texture present that finishes very dry at the end. Very unique profile.

D: Very drinkable given the high ABV. The complexity of this beer is quite appealing. This beer goes multidimensional on you which is just fantastic. Very nice 30th anniversary closer!

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2011 01:53:34 | More by racer2k
Photo of jjboesen


4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is it: my 175th beer review. Thank you! For this important milestone, I have selected this magnificent ale, itself recognizing a milestone for Sierra Nevada. This is very special ale has been brewed with several of Sierra Nevada's foremost products: oak-aged Bigfoot, their phenomenal Celebration and the ubiquitous pale ale. Throw in some additional dry-hopping and you do have a special quaff ahead.

It opens in a monstrous gush of froth, one that seems to stand still awaiting your admiration and anticipation; slowly, it begins to settle. Wait. Give it time. The snifter is filled with cloudy copper liquid, within which dance a small crowd of carbonation bubbles. Above it all, serving as a shimmery crown, is the pillowy head; the glass is sticky with splotchy lacing.

Now, let us take a whiff: the nose is inundated with an intense miasma of citrus. The palate is overwhelmed with sweet overtones of plum with the obvious supplement of malt at the finish. The mouthfeel seems complex, but this beer is not aggressively so. One needs to really work at it - but not so as to diminish the enjoyment.

I really enjoyed this; it made an endearing quaff for my Christmas evening. I shudder at what the brewers from Chico have planned for their 40th Anniversary.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 20:25:54 | More by jjboesen
Photo of BigB415


4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours amber color into my wine glass(all beer glasses are in the dishwasher) with really heavy lacing and a huge head. The only way the lacing will come off is if I rub it with my finger. Smell of fruit and a little alcohol. Taste of hops go down easily. This is one of the smoothest strong ales I have ever had which I'm not complaining about. A good sipper. This complex anniversary ale hides the 9.2% ABV. This may be the first Sierra Nevada I actually like. $9.99 is the only "gripe" I have with this beer but it's understandable because it's a 30th anniversary brew that is a one time thing.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 05:00:56 | More by BigB415
Photo of GregSVT


4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml cork & caged bottle info a snifter

A: Pours a beautiful amber with a huge light tan head that will not go away and leaves tons of lacing on the glass.

S: The nose is a nice balance of hops and malt with aromas of grapefruit and caramel. Those are the two big elements that dominate and you can smell how each beer influences the final product.

T: The first thing that hits your tounge is a huge hop presence in the form of grapefruit bitterness. As I sip this I pick up other tropical fruits and a nice caramel malt backbone. Again you can taste how each beer affects the final brew.

M: The feel is thick and creamy which you wouldn't expect from a hoppy beer but it works very nicely.

D: Super tasty and I wish I could get more. The ABV and bottle size may end up getting me though...

I hope they make this again in the future sometime...it's a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 02:59:23 | More by GregSVT
30th Anniversary - Grand Cru from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 761 ratings.