1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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.

3,349 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,349
Reviews: 1,471
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 9.81%
Wants: 171
Gots: 158 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,349 | Reviews: 1,471 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BlackBearForge
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Northern Hemisphere like all of Sierra Nevada's products is a lovely beer. Lucent coppery amber, clear and with a big rocky head of foam which leaves ample pacing.

Fresh soft and floral hops meet the nose at first whiff backed up by an equally fresh caramel malt aroma.

Big fresh hops drive this beer with more of the flora/herbal character noted in the aroma. While there are hops aplenty, this is not an over the top "hoppy" beer but being a nice blend of soft floral, slightly spicey herbal, lightly citrus hops with a strong and delicious piney resin background. The malt body is masterfully balanced with the hops, lightly toasted and drizzled with bits of caramel, somewhat sweet up front with a moderately bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is medium, with a soft lusciousness to the body coupled with just the perfect amount of carbonation.

While I believe I prefer Southern Hemisphere as a fresh wet hop ale from Sierra Nevada that won't prevent me from enjoying this, my second and I doubt the last, bottle of Northern Hemisphere.

Photo of jeffthecheff
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an impressive clear, medium amber color. Head is big with great lacing and retention...very typical of Sierra Nevada.

Aroma is great. Cascade hops are obviously apparent. There is a great amount of pungent, resiny herb character along with grapefruit, pine, and grass. Very fresh smelling.

Solid bitterness and hop flavor combines with fruitiness and dark herbal character on the palate. My complaints about the beer are too much caramel malt flavor and residual sugars, and too high of carbonation. A bomber is nice to have for the fresh hop season, but I might be better off with a Pale Ale bomber.

Photo of cratez
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Relatively fresh bomber from Ryan's Party Store in Port Huron, MI. Pours a deep amber hue with one finger of rocky, eggshell white head and thin strands of lacing on the tulip glass. Smell is all about the wet, whole-cone hops, with tangerine, citrus, flower pedals, orange rind, nectarine, red and white grapefruit, and resinous pine needles coming to the fore. Taste is identical to the nose with pithy, citric, and fruity hop flavours on the palate and a bold, mouth-coating bitterness to end. Some lightly toasty caramel and pale malts provide a biscuit-like backbone to balance and I also get a small trace of cookie dough. Medium mouthfeel has an indulgent silkiness about it, very juicy and oily middle, crisp carbonation with a flash of spice from the C hops and a lingering bitter finish. This harvest ale is just brimming with complex aromas and flavours. The hop oils and resins are evident throughout, and here again Sierra Nevada shows how to take a ridiculous amount of humulus lupulus and create an IPA that's much more rewarding and sophisticated than mere hop tea. A model India Pale Ale from Chico, California.

Photo of donkeyrunner
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Paired with my homemade pad Thai, "bad Thai." Next time I'll get it right.

Crystal clear, almost still, orange pour. Bone marrow beige white head three fingers good. Foam is plentifully plastered by a liquid obscuring retention.

Sharp citrus and grassy hops provided by centennia and cascade. A little pine in there too. I'm not sure if the pine comes from the wet hopping or if there's a new hop called centennia or if the Sierra Nevada website is missing an "l". I'm going with option #1 and #3.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly silky smooth and largely devoid of any hop resin. Lightly bitter the hops come through mainly as a soft pine and citrus grass flavor. Malt is there in abundance but doesn't have much personality -- a starfish if you will.

In the battle of North vs. South the North wins (again). Southern Hemisphere was more pleasingly bitter I must add.

Photo of glid02
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Young Augustine's in Atlanta.

Pours a slightly hazy deep copper color with a one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of moderately dry caramel malts with large amounts of pine and herbal hops. Also present are more earthy hop notes that intensify as the beer warms.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though more subdued. Grainy caramel malt flavors with lighter pale malts kick things off and are joined almost immediately by robust pine flavors. Midway through the sip the hop flavors turn earthy with hints of lighter leafiness. The hops carry through to a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a very nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I finished my glass without a problem and could easily have a few more.

Overall I found this to be similar to Celebration as far as the hop profile but with more earthiness. Well worth a shot.

Photo of zoso1967
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served up a beautiful copper amber color with a parchment head. The head fits your classic wet hopped characteristics to a "T" and is slick looking with great retention and lacing qualities.

The aroma is bursting with classic "C" hop character. It is predominantly grapefruit with slightly pithy citrus and some floral grassiness. The malt aromas are rich with a nice amount of caramel malt like qualities.

The flavor has a very nice hop bite to it with slightly pithy grapefruit being the main flavor my tongue is picking up. The malt background has a very nice caramel character to it and it does a good job of standing up to the dank hop flavors. This beer is quite bitter, but not out of hand. I would say that it is definitely leaning on the hoppier side of the scale without going too far off the deep end.

The body is medium with a character that is smooth up front and nice and dry on the finish. With wet hopped beers you sometimes get a crazy hop oil finish that just doesn't quit, but this one is not bad at all.

This is a very drinkable fresh hopped ale, and of all of them I have had I think it might be one of the best to have with food. If price is a concern I would definitely take this one over more expensive examples from SN or other breweries.

Photo of sitarist
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours copper in color...tiny, lazy bubbles rise to a large head that leaves patches of lacing.

I smell pine, citrus, dog soap, and blue Bolivian dust...the aromas are subdued, effervescent, and alluring.

Even after fifty days the hops still dominate the flavors...peppery and resinous...are you sure they don't use coca leaves in this brew?

Lighter bodied, and warm with a nice tight fizz on my tongue...it is slightly astringent.

Bitter but quaffable...I wish I had another!

Photo of Zundo
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: A clear Copper with a two-finger off-white head with a good deal of lacing.

Smell: Very citrusy hops, most notably grapefruit, orange zest, and pine. A roasted malt.

Taste: Resiny with grapefruit and pine present. You can really tell this is a fresh, wet hop. Touch grassy.

Feel: Really smooth throughout, with a bit of an oily finish.

Drinkability: This is a fairly intense beer on the palate. The taste does not dissipate too much.

Photo of oakbluff
3.4/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle- pours deep copper/caramel colour with average head and thin lacing. Nose- grassy pine, some spice. Taste- spicy, with fairly meaty hop profile that is quite bitter and quickly drying. The caramel malts are there, but this is a very bitter brew and a little one sided on that aspect of the hops. Was hoping for more "fresh" hop flavours. Drinkability is good, but the dry bitterness does get somewhat tiring.

Photo of Dougal
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Excellent product very different than the southern hemisphere in that this was much more malty to me... it also played on chocolate and nut flavors more so than the southern. It reminded me very much of Smuttynose Pale Ale with the malt being slight chocolate and nut and dry.

the abv at 6.7 is a bit high for sessions, I'd recommend the Smuttynose Pale Ale at 5 abv and excellent taste for a comparable product.

Photo of orsulacp
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First off this series is always the best bang for the buck hands down, 4.35 for a 22oz bomber of this quality. Nice dark amber body with a slightly off white head. The smell is a bit disappointing, woody and grassy with a little bit of caramel. The taste is very good I love the nutty flavor at the end, very earthy and woody with a little malty sweetness to balance the slightly bitter woody taste. The body is on the light side of medium, a very drinkable beer.

Photo of Pabs311
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a nice clean, clear copper color with a nice thick foamy off-white head that settles slowly and leaves some beautiful sticky lacing on the glass.

S- Somewhat lack-luster hop profile. citrus and tropical fruit hops, some pine and earthy qualities. strong malt backbone.

T- Similar in dissapointment. bigger malt character than hop. same citrus/tropical/earth/pine hops as aroma. but bigger caramel maltiness.

M/D- Good carbonation, medium bodied. very drinkable. would like to see some more hops expressed here since that is the selling point of this beer.

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 22oz bomber for $6.99 from OLive Tree Market here in OB and poured it into an Odell's pint glass.

A: Pours a clean copper hue with a nice fluffy white head that sticks around for a few sips, leaving massive amounts of lacing in its tracks.

S: Big hop - very earthy and mossy, roasted malt and sweet grain.

T: Sweet and grainy with prevalent roasted malts that are followed up by bitter resinous hops - super fresh and grassy. Good stuff!

M: Medium bodied, sticky and smooth, with a mellow carbonation that works well with this style.

D: Very drinkable - I drank tons of these at Toronado last week and hadn't tried it in the bottle yet. Picked one up tonight and wished I had grabbed a few more.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of WeedKing4
3.45/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, dark copper amber colour with a decent amount of head in the sam adams perfect pint glass. It has a slight malt caramal like taste, but I kinda taste rust like features in the finish. Not a lot of bitterness, and the hops aren't too noticable. Its very bland and not impressive to be honest. Haven't found too much from this brewery that I have enjoyed so far.

Photo of Genuine
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 24oz bomber into a clean pint glass and it has a very nice dark, dark copper/amber with a huge light tan, fluffy head that lingers for quite a while.

Smell - definitely hints of lemon, orange, citrus, maybe some pineapple.

Taste - Hops aren't playing the starring role here, which I thought they would. They are much more mellow, with the malts picking up the pace and the cascade hops making an appearance right before the finish. Not to say that this makes the beer bad, but then again, this is my first wet-hop ale. It's nice.

Mouthfeel - I want to say medium. The carbonation dances on the palate in a very nice way.

Drinkability - this one is very easy to drink, very smooth and mellow in flavor but not lacking in taste. I feel as if their pale ale is more hoppy than what this is. Very pleasant beer, though.

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 24 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a copper color, with a thick, stubborn 2" head that sloooowly reduces with sticky lacing down the sides. The head begins to look like dried merangue!

Has a citrusy, almost lemeony smell, with wet grain, grass, and decent malt. Almost like smelling a salad before its dressed. Not nearly so hoppy as I was expecting at first. As it warms, however, you smell more piney hops.

Taste has spicy bold hops in spades. Peppery, astringent and tongue curling, you can feel the beer warming your throat and esophagus as it wends its way to your belly. Sweet malt hits up front, before the white pine assault on your mid to back tongue. Very flavorful!

Mouthfeel is medium, with a tongue-tingling portion of hops.

Quite drinkable, I plan on enjoying every sip of the seasonal classic.

Photo of mbusster88
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 24oz bottle.

A: Nice fluffy head, just about 3 fingers. Very solid head though which sticks around nicely. Carbonation is fairly present off the bottom of the glass.

S: Citrus, pine, tangerine and orange. Wonderful hop smell in the nose and that classic astringent smell.

T: Very crisp on the tongue. Good amount of hop bite in that with a nice clean mouth feel. Really like the bitterness matched with some sweet malty flavors. Definitely get citrus and that astringent flavor carrying over from the nose.

M: Mouth feel is nice, good hops there with a nice clean feeling though. Really like how the tongue tingles a bit after the drink, but feels like its been cleaned nicely.

D: Very refreshing drink to have. Great especially because of its freshness and the wet hopping, which is some of the better that I have had this year.

Photo of busternuggz
4.18/5  rDev 0%
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.

Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Caramel with red overtones and a very thin head. Leaves nice lacing on the glass.

S - Piney, grassy with a deep scent of hop resin. Also a hint of sweet malt.

T - Dry peppery hops right up front followed by citrus and pine. The resin flavor that is distinctive in wet-hop ales comes through very nicely.

M - Light and easy drinking. Ever so slightly boozy and prickly on the mouth.

D - Too bad hops aren't harvested in spring, cuz I would love this refreshing beverage then.

Photo of Bombers4Benedict
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First let me start by saying a great product for a great price. I have been burned by too many "wet hop ales" that don't deliver the crisp, fresh taste that is advertised by them all. This one does.

A - Dark dark copper, slightly orange. Nice tan head that grabs the inside of the glass as you consume. With a lacing you can tell every sip you have taken during the duration. This one attaches itself everywhere.

S - Very floral at first, fresh. Earthy tones with a slight citrus hint in the background.

T - Clean crisp. There is again a floral start that melds into a very smooth burn, if tha makes any sense.

M/D - This beer coats your mouth with a film often consistant with IPA's. Very pleasant. The drinkability is great. This is one that is fresh and light enough whereas the entire bomber could be downed by myself no problem.

Photo of nas5755
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

dark amber with red hues, very clear. A nice thick head with amazing retention. I poured the beer and let it sit for half an hour as I finished cooking and the head has barely moved. Lacing is nice. Grassy with citrus, and some pine, very green. The taste is clean with wet hop bitterness, grassy, citrus up front and a nice pine finish. Nice malt bill that doesn't dominate but adds enough residual sugars to balance nicely from an Americans point of view. A smooth beer with carbonation. A very drinkable beer at decent price.

Photo of CBlack85
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 24 oz. bottle into a Smuttynose big beer balloon glass.

Pours a deep caramel/copper/orange-ish color with a huge chunky tan head that slowly recedes, leaving behind a spectacular amount of sticky lacing.

Lots of floral and earthy hops at first with some citrusy hops lurking in the background. Light malty base gives a faintly sweet aroma with some bready notes as well.

The flavor is very clean and crisp. A nice hop bite up front balanced by slightly sweet caramel malts. The hop presence is very well balanced as well with piney and floral notes mixing well with some grapefruit and orange peel citrusy goodness. Really well crafted. Medium/light bodied and very easy to drink.

Sierra Nevada never disappoints, but this offering is phenomenal. I think I'll have another

Photo of musicforairports
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An amber, copper color. Lacing lasts a bit.

Smells like a good harvest-style beer: Sticky, vegetative pine hops on the nose, mostly.

The hops are subdued in the flavor, as is often the case for a wet-hopped beer, but they still dominate. Tastes of thick pine and a hint of citrus with some underlying malt. Unlike regular IPAs, the hops never really smack you in the face at all, and the only bitterness is in the finish. A very good wet-hopped beer. I had this last year, but I can't quite remember how it compares.

Mouthfeel is medium; the hops are a bit sticky on the tongue but it's no effort to drink at all.

Drinkability is very good. Sierra Nevada does good, drinkable hoppy beers well.

Photo of soze47
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the 2010 edition, released in 10/10. I had previously tried the 2009 edition and loved it despite the fact that it was several months old by the time I found one. I hope this one is even better fresh!

Appearance: Brown with a crystal clear sheen. Big fluffy/pillowy head that leave rich lacing.

Aroma: piney and herbal, but also some subtle notes of almost a toasted english muffin.

Taste: Piney, clean bite up front, herbal and grassy hops come second and mingle well with a not sweet, but very present malt.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Highly clear, clean, and crisp. Linger is pleasant and make this guy all to easy to enjoy. A bunch of these guys would be a great idea for hosting a football game with beer fans.

Overall: I liked this guy a lot. I've been underwhelmed by some fresh hop offerings as they are often too grassy to be robust. This one, however, shows that fresh hops can be robust, yet not over the top. Great balance here too. This malt bill is money!

33 Beers Wheel Chart (5 high to 1 low):
Alcohol/Solvent: 2.5
Dark Fruit: 2
Citrus Fruit: 2.5
Hoppy (Pine): 3.5
Floral: 3
Spicy: 3
Herbal: 3.5
Malty: 2.5
Toffee: 1.5
Burnt: 1
Sweet: 1.5
Sour: 1
Bitter: 3
Astringent: 2
Body: 3
Linger: 3

Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 3,349 ratings.