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Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop AleNorthern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,033 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,033
Reviews: 1,441
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.55%
Wants: 166
Gots: 104 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: jmatthew on 10-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,033 | Reviews: 1,441 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Buebie
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I feel privileged that I'm able to get this beer every year!

Poured from a 24 ounce brown bottle into a pub glass. Off the pour a 2'' off white foamy head builds up, somewhat slow to recede and leave a thin cap and thick collar. Lace is thick with sticky webbing all around.
The liquid itself is a transparent amber, glowing bright when held to light.

Aroma is pungent with dank hops, pine, rind and spiceie onions, earthy and weed filled.

Taste following aroma, only more strongly and so much more fulfilling! Dank weed, resin, hops are hard to explain here, its extremely flavorful and yet not overpowering bitters. Much like drinking vamp blood in the show true blood, I can taste the earth these hop vines grew in (if you have not seen the show u will not get this at all without me sounding loony)
Still malt comes forward, bready with caramel, toasted bread crust, burnt sugars, mustard seeds, ahh its wonderful.
The finish is an excellerant of hop bitterness and lemon rind that lingers long time and loves you long time.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp with moderate carbonation. Not thin, but light. Not light, but thin. No wait...the other way around.

Highly recommend, as always.

Buebie, Nov 03, 2009
Photo of DaggerEyes
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured a clear copper with a one finger froathy head. moderate lacing. beads of carbonation rushing to the surface.

Grapefruit and pine on the nose sweet resiny with some light phenols.

grapefruit and pine with a nice malt profile to balance, dry finish.

super smooth mouthfeel. medium bodied a decent amount of carbonation, not a lot but what is there makes it's presences felt.

I like this beer alot though I do remember it being even better on tap...

DaggerEyes, Oct 25, 2007
Photo of VelvetExtract
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a thin darkish amber. Not much head to speak of, but that doesn't always predict the quality of the beer. Leave better lacing than I would have expected. This pours very similarly to Loose Cannon in my opinion. I love Loose Cannon by the way.

S-Thick and very juicy. Very hoppy and pungent. Fruity. More fruity than piney in my opinion. Malt is quite refreshing. Smells awesome. Definately getting some grains in there too. This beer smells really nice.

T-Very robust without being overwhelming. The best way i can describe this beer is juicy. Definately well balanced but the beer still focuses upon the hop profile.

M-Lighter medium body. Smooth with slight stickiness. A bit resinous too. Pleasantly dry.

D-Like every single Sierra Nevada beer, this one is drinkable.

I love the Sierra Nevada Harvest beers. They are very flavorful but still not hard to put down, and are relatively affordable. Sierra Nevada is such a solid company.

VelvetExtract, Jan 20, 2011
Photo of busternuggz
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 24 oz bottle into a Bordeaux glass (and refilled).
Nice orange-amber color with a thick, foamy 1" pale tan head, leaves thick curtains of lacing. Head settles down to about 1/4" with good retention. A little dark for an IPA is really my only complaint here.
Juicy, sweet tangerine and mango on the nose, with just a little floral hops. Smells very fresh and inviting.
The taste is very juicy too, with a big red grapefruit character dominating. Ends with some lime/grapefruit rind and just a little pine sap and a nice dryness. Well balanced, a little sweetness up front that quickly gives way to the citrus dry/bitter tastes. The aftertaste has a bit too much citrus rind bitterness.
The texture is lush and (I'll say it again) juicy, medium bodied and smooth, a little bit creamy.
Very approachable and inviting, but the aftertaste brings the drinkability down a touch for me.
Overall, yet another delicious wet hop ale, well crafted and balanced with only minor flaws.

busternuggz, Nov 04, 2010
Photo of MountainBeagle
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Background: 22oz wet hop northern hemisphere from Sierra Nevada 2011, it's amber in color (6.7%)

First Thoughts: These hops are amazing, a very good IPA. They have definitely improved this beer!

The Good: Piney resinous hops take over this beer but not overpowering, a true gem of a beer. It is a lasting hop experience that will have you wishing for another one.

The Bad: can't find anything wrong with this one.

Bottom Line: Get it fresh, I would not buy this past February 2012 (unless it's a new batch) A top notch IPA.

MountainBeagle, Nov 05, 2011
Photo of tillmac62
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 bottle. Pours a clear amber with an outstanding head that laces just as well. Nose is hoppy of pine and grapefruit with a slight malt undertone. Light medium mouthfeel with good carbonation. The taste is well balanced between hop flavor and bitterness and a touch of malt sweetness. Neither pine or grapefruit flavor predominate. Clean finish with lingering moderate grapefruit bitterness. Quite nice.

tillmac62, Dec 03, 2013
Photo of Gehrig
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear brown-orange body with a dense, durable patch of slightly tan foam that leaves ample lacing on the DAB mug. Fine aromas of citrus hops, with plenty to spare and some pine hints as well. Good hopped taste with grapefruit and orange most evident. I'd prefer a bolder flavor, but the balance between hops and malt is quite good. I'd also prefer a denser backbone, especially with the malt. This is quite good, the bready malt is evident and no slouch, but I'd love to see it take that next step and be as brazen as a DIPA; it's nearly there. Yet as it stands, this is a very good IPA. I love the fine, steady effervescence, the duel between bitter and sweet smooth.

Really good stuff. I'll be sure to grab a few more 24 oz. bombers from the outstanding Neil St. Piccadilly, which did well by stocking up on this gem. Well done yet again, Sierra Nevada.

Gehrig, Nov 22, 2008
Photo of Shrews629
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Nice slightly hazy deep orange, light copper color. A thick, creamy, fluffy white head with excellent size, retention and lacing. Some light orange and dark yellow highlights are showing at the bottom of the glass. This brew has an almost red tint when held toward the light.

Smell - Grapefruit and peach notes are the prime aroma. Some biscuit malt helps balance the sweet citrus nose. Very well balanced. The smell is not as robust as some others, but that could be that the bottle is not as fresh as it could be. Still very nice though.

Taste - The taste was of, again, grapefruit and peaches. I even got a bit of some pineapple sweetness. Some dry bread and dried wheat help to compliment this flavor. The alcohol is only slightly present in a good way.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel. Dry, smooth and crisp. Really leaves a lot on the palate. Small amount of some alcohol warmth. It's not distracting and really fits nicely.

Drinkability - Another tremendous brew from Sierra Nevada. I would really like to try this at its peak freshness. I'll be sure to be on the lookout for it next year. It's still really, really good. A lot of flavor an da great mouthfeel. Easily drinkable and one that I will look forward to each year. I liked the Estate Homegrown Ale a bit better, but this is still a brew that I could enjoy drinking anytime.

Shrews629, Jan 18, 2011
Photo of ancientelixir
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice inch and a half head from a slow pour into a pint glass. Amber color, clear but their is some fine particles suspended. Malty smell, mixed with a good hop aroma of pine and citrus, sweet smelling. Mouthfeel is smooth with a lot of carbonation. The malt and hop bitterness are present right away in the flavor and both hold equally strong as the taste fades. The hops linger on, sweet and fruity. Leaves a little warming in the mouth.

ancientelixir, Apr 27, 2009
Photo of Vengeance526
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark orange amber color with a light off-white head that quickly subsides to a light ring and leaves a moderate amount of sticky lacing.

Aroma is very strong with notes of spicy, earthy hops upfront, along with a clear scent of citrus and just a touch of pine at the back.

Taste starts off with a citrus burst of fresh lemon and grapefruit. The piney hops make their presence known shortly after and light spices are present throughout, right into the aftertaste. A little caramel can also be detected.

Medium body with light to medium carbonation. Another solid offering from SN and I have no complaints. I'll be coming back for more.

Vengeance526, Oct 18, 2009
Photo of StaveHooks
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a brilliant amber with an impressive 2 finger cream colored head that shows stellar retention. Massive horizontal sheets of lacing left behind.

S - Green hops, pine, fresh herbs, toasted grain, dry grain, hints of sweet citrus.

T - Fresh floral/herbal hops rush over the palate turning to pine, bright lemon, and bitter grapefruit oils. Toasted grain builds underneath candied oranges and finishes fresh with a clean bitterness.

M - Medium body, medium carbonation, smooth feel.

Lots of fresh hop flavors without an aggressive bitterness. This was one of the best retaining heads I've seen on an AIPA. Toasted malt give good balance. It's a refreshing IPA.

StaveHooks, Jan 19, 2012
Photo of Chaz
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A "darker" complexion that their Pale, as I'm waxing poetic I'd call it chestnut-amber in color. Poured with a bare minimum of head, but I appreciated it while it lasted (thing is, the bartender poured the beer to damn-near overflowing!) Hops are earthy and herbaceous, spicy and subtle all at once - I really, really enjoyed the nose on this one, and let it sit for a good minute to warm and to take in its finer qualities. A bit skunky in a good way, too. Medium-bodied yet this drinks like a lighter bodied ale, and also tricks you into thinking it's smaller somehow; I'm thinking this happened because I let it warm a bit? The other thing is, last time I enjoyed this was in a smokey bar and now (thanks to anti-smoking efforts everywhere) no more smoke in bars to get in the way of me and my beer and this is *much* better than I remember as a result. Harvest Ale's alcohol is higher than Pale's but doesn't *seem* higher due to its unique body and texture. Mouthfeel is definitely creamy, juicy, but amply punctuated by spicy hops. Notes of honeydew melon and cherry from some of the tawnier malts used in this really give it some depth, especially as the hops add a familiar pineapple musk to this brew. And then there's the bitterness: piney, resiny, oily hops with a touch of stinging nettles, it's a bitterness that lingers on your palate like the acrid smoke of an old man's favorite pipe - even in a smokeless bar! Wonderful stuff, and makes me think a lot more highly of it than just "the smaller brother of Celebration", even though there are some similarities. A heck of a deal too - it was 'Two for One' night . . .

Chaz, Nov 24, 2006
Photo of cdpike
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice caramel color with really good clarity, big thick lasting foam. Nose is mostly of hops with a bit of malty sweetness but not too citrusy. Fairly heavy bodied and pretty creamy and smooth - not very carbonated. Mostly American hoppy APA bitterness at first but actually finishes very chewy, almost like a brown ale - big caramel flavor. Lasting subtle finish of Pacific Northwest hops. Unique and quite hearty, I'll be getting this one again! Probably best for the fall/winter seasons. I haven't really had one quite like this. Why don't I drink other Sierra Nevadas (besides the Pale Ale) more often???

cdpike, Jul 12, 2009
Photo of McStagger
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle at the local liquor store. I have to admit, it's a pretty impressive label. Killer presentation. Bar code with some numbers, but no discernible expiration date. Let's give er a whirl!

A: Pours a hazy penny colored reddish brown. Lively carbonation. Large bubbles. Couple fingers of off white head with great retention. Stellar lacing of the glass.

S: Piney, woody and resinous with mango and grapefruit bursting out of the glass. Big malts rise up in the nose with bready, doughy and sweet notes contrasting the fruit and evergreen.

T: Malt followed by an immediate drying of the mouth from the hops. Notes of peach/nectarine are followed by orange and grapefruit with a slight bit of...mango, maybe? These are all subtle flavors that are quickly devoured by evergreen and woody flavors. The finish is very dry, with hints of residual bitterness and that same woodiness coming through.

M: The moderate carbonation works well with how dry this beer finishes. Balanced for what it is. Absolutely no residual taste or feel of alcohol, even though it clocks in near 7 percent.

O: Once again, Sierra Nevada knocks one out of the park. More and more SN is becoming my go to beer. Any dive in Santa Barbara carries the pale, I can find the Torpedo for cheap at the grocery store. Seriously, it's hard to go wrong with a brand this widely available and this good. And the pricing is fair, for the most part. Sam Adams and Yuengling may have larger numbers, but as far as I'm concerned, this is THE great American brewery operating right now.

McStagger, Feb 13, 2012
Photo of tdm168
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - orangish amber with a huge, towering mountain of off white head that has great retention

S - citrus, floral, faint bread

T - bready malt, some caramel, faint sugary sweetness, grapefruit, mango, some floral hints, piney bitter finish

M - medium bodied, well carbonated

This is a really nice beer. The flavor is well balanced. The malt is bold and forward. The hops are intricate and incredibly flavorful. They seem to hit each note on the hop spectrum. It's not overpoweringly bitter and the ABV is manageable which allows one to work through a 24oz bottle with ease. I am really glad I picked this beer up.

tdm168, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of Canada_Dan
4.19/5  rDev 0%

Canada_Dan, May 12, 2014
Photo of draheim
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

24oz bottle (2011) poured into a tulip. Pours a clear gorgeous amber color w/ a creamy white head, great retention and lacing.

Aroma is clean bright hops - mostly pine & resin, some floral and tropical hints on the back end.

Taste is really nicely balanced - a blend of bready pale & caramel malts tempered by just the right amount of floral bitter hops. Just a touch of citrusy grapefruit rind gives the palate a bright alpha-acid tingle. Really nice crisp clean finish. More piney character as it warms.

Mouthfeel is classic clean Sierra Nevada goodness. Medium-bodied, balanced. Can't stop sipping this.

Overall a really good fresh-hop IPA, enjoyed this one from Sierra Nevada.

draheim, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of Axnjxn
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

on draft at beer study in chapel hill. sierra Nevada shaker.

pours a dark copper with a nice head. smell is nice and hoppy and fresh! taste is just amazingly fresh and hoppy and good. very impressive! medium bodied, mild carbonation.

overall a great fresh hop IPA!

Axnjxn, Nov 07, 2013
Photo of SmashPants
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle: solid dark brown 710mL bottle, with a very stylish, vintage-style label. A good-looking package that has me expecting a quality product.

Appearance: a vibrant, pure orange colour, with hints of red and dusty brown. Very little carbonation. A fairly solid head pops up to two fingers, and settles to a thick, rocky pure white with great lacing and decent retention.

Aroma: a definite caramel malt comes forth, with some citric hops backing up - predominantly grapefruit. Not much more than those, but they'll definitely do.

Taste: I'm not sure if it's the speed with which they deliver the hops to the bottle, but this beer seems very fresh, quite organic. Defined characteristics of pine, grapefruit and caramels. I really enjoy the addition of the caramel malts instead of the usual AIPA "million hops with no distinct flavour".

Aftertaste: a lingering bitterness in the throat that makes one feel like drinking more. Sounds good to me! A dryness across the palate too.

Mouth feel: smooth and quite heavy in body, with a heavier yet fine carbonation. More carbonation than the initial appearance would suggest. Goes down very easily, which is a bit of a concern considering the price.

Overall: a very good example of a good-quality, flavoursome American IPA. I am a bit sick olf the usual "whop the hops in an hope for the best" AIPAs that have no taste. This one is clean, crisp and distinctly flavoursome. A very nice beer, that whilst a bit dear at AU$80 a case of 12 x 710mL, is a darn site better than half of the worse, but more expensive AIPAs out there.

SmashPants, Feb 28, 2013
Photo of Flounder57
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer a small head that reduced to a thin layer. It a copper color with great clarity and vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Nice lacing on the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Piney, grassy, citrusy, bready, caramel , citrusy, and floral.

Taste: You pick up more grapefruit and tangerine in the taste to go with the bready, pale, and caramel malts. Nice hoppy pine and fresh grassy hops too.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, chewy, medium bodied, medium carbonation, and a nice mild hop bitterness.

Overall: Nothing better than an IPA with fresh hops. Very delicious brew.

Flounder57, Oct 31, 2013
Photo of cjgiant
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: clear amber tending towards a little brown, sustaining head with decent lacing
S: the nose wasn't as strong as I would expect. With some effort, what I got was a nice meadow scent, little earthy and a little grassy and flowery, blended well together. Just wish there was a stronger presence to enjoy it.

T/M: dry from the beginning, pleasantly so; also very earthy flavor throughout. There is very little malts up front, maybe a little nuttiness from the grain is what you will get. The bitterness in the hops tends toward grapefruit flavors. The flavors don't evolve a whole lot through the taste, but stay steady in their earth-tones: dirt, clay, grass, hay and pine. The dryness is also well hidden, but savoring the flavors sip by sip, I started to notice it more.

O: I enjoyed the taste, but was hoping more for the nose. I think the balance and consistency of the taste throughout are something to be appreciated, and perhaps I should appreciate it more than my expectations of strong scents and flavors one way or another.

(edit: retried today, and stand by original assessment except so expound that the dry earthiness does tend to linger quite long).

cjgiant, Nov 23, 2013
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

So this counts as a new beer huh? Ok, looks just like the standard harvest ale, brown, good clarity and lots of carbonation.

Lots of wet hops, cascade, centennial and columbus I think. A degree of spice with it usually associated in the 5-10% rye range.

Very consistent stuff out of the bottle, always seems to be less hoppy than the tap version. Of course I think my palate has been exposed to so many extreme hoppy beers, this might be the same as it ever was at times. Its not overly hopped, or under hopped, its wet hopped, and appreciated.

Beerandraiderfan, Nov 07, 2010
Photo of CloudStrife
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

24oz bottle split and poured into a snifter. Bottled September 19th 2012.

A: Pours a clear ruby copper with a 1.5 finger puffy white head. Leaves some nice lacing as it dissipates over the course of a few minutes.

S: Has a bold hop characteristic to it with some spice and a herbal hop overtone. A bit of sweet carmel malts back up the hoppiness.

T: A whole mouth hop flavor. Has an earthiness and floral taste. A semi sweet backs it like the aroma. Slight alcohol tinge at the end. Certainly a west coast style IPA.

M: A medium body with mild carbonation. A little bit sticky but nothing that distracts from the mouth.

Overall great for what it is trying to be. Really nails the harvest IPA style. Freshness on this is great.

CloudStrife, Oct 19, 2012
Photo of stricklandia
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I expected lots of pine and citrus out of this hoppy beer, but the nose was about as floral as could be. If I were blindfolded, I really would have guessed I was smelling a flower.

Color, mouthfeel and taste were all great. Again, the hops were not as heavy as I expected, but were very much present in the taste. Overall very smooth and drinkable.

I'm not as analytical a taster/reviewer as some, so I'll just say that it was an enjoyable brew. If you're reading this to decide whether or not to buy, I say Go for it!

stricklandia, Apr 02, 2010
Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

24oz split and poured into a Guinness Pint. No date to be seen.

A - Nice rich amber color with a solid 2 finger cream-colored fluffy head with good retention and some sticky lacing.

S - Damp earth with a great bouquet of hop aromas including citrus and pine needle. Backbone of a good malty sweetness hides under the hop flavors.

T - Fantastic balance between the sweet malts and bitter "wet" hops. The citrus found in the smell is almost totally absent and overshadowed by the pine flavors. Spices lurk in the shadows of all the other flavors.

M - Smooth across the palate with a dryness on the finish.

D - This beer is quite interesting. Good aroma and flavor but its a potent beer for sure. Its flavor doesn't not lend well to mass consumption. Drink it slow.

BeerFMAndy, Apr 30, 2009
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 3,033 ratings.