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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.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

3,277 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,277
Reviews: 1,465
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 9.57%
Wants: 168
Gots: 147 | 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:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,277 | Reviews: 1,465 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lindenboy
3.48/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Man, you guys are all up in SN's panties. I have been WAITING for this beer, and after getting it, I'm under-impressed.

Some friends and I made a harvest ale this year with wet hops from the back yard -- about 6 pounds or more in 8 gallons. Cascade, Centennial and Chinook hops. This ale was amazing, primarily due to the fresh hops.

Unfortunately, SN's try this year is a thiner than expected pale ale with less than enough fresh hop flavor. I was expecting a little more malt sweetness to balance the bitter hops...the aroma hops just aren't doing it for me!

Nice color, good head, aroma is lacking in fresh hop goodness, and drinkability is fine, but lackluster. Don't get me wrong, buy one of these and relish in the awesomness of the fresh hops...just don't get crazy. And this beer (as are most fresh hop beers) is not one that will last. Chill it and kill it.

lindenboy, Oct 26, 2008
Photo of humanawho
3.85/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - nice light amber color and solid white head

S - great earthy freash hop aroma

T - solid ipa, the freshness of the hopes is there but not extream just makes it more refreshing and light than a normal ipa

M - there is a little sharpness that i don't like but it has a solid body

D - drinkability is hurt a little by the sharpness

humanawho, Oct 26, 2008
Photo of Goliath
3.7/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a fairly clear amber color with a huge two inch yellowed head. Great retention and some nice lacing.

The aroma is nice. A decent hop presence showing mostly citrus quality, a little pine and spice too.

The taste is ok. A mild hop presence by my estimation, giving a bit of grass to the profile along with a very slight bitterness. The malt profile is bigger than I remember too. It's almost got a rye bite to it, kind of hay like. I'm underwhelmed.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and moderately carbonated with fine bubbles, really gentle.

Drinkability is fairly high. It's a solid beer and a decent experience. For the price you can't beat it. Seriously, $3 for 24oz? That's a deal.

Goliath, Oct 26, 2008
Photo of Atlas1
3.78/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drinking a fat 24-oz bottle like this reminds me of drinking a 40-oz malt liquor. Good times.

Poured into a barrel pint, the Harvest is a healthy amber/brown color with hues of bronzed orange that shine through. Good looking 1.5 finger head on top yields a very nice, sticky lace. The nose is hoppy but sweet. Sort of a strawberry pine scent. Slight hints of malts and bread. Not bad at all. It tastes like a clean, hoppy ale should. Smooth, but hoppy with a lingering bitterness in the end. Piney, but with a slight citrusy tartness to it. Again, with a noticeable bread presence in the middle. Mouthfeel is crisp, clean, and refreshing with and dry finish.

A solid outing once again by the folks at Sierra Nevada. This is a very good, not great beer, in my opinion. But it's solid and consistent and does not disappoint really in any aspect. The nose could be a bit bigger for my tastes, but that's just me being picky. A totally drinkable beer.

Atlas1, Oct 25, 2008
Photo of FacistCannonBall
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 24 oz. bottle. It has a nice aged copper color with a substantial head that laces down the glass. I enjoyed the smell, which was hoppy yet different than other beers presumably because of it being wet-hopped. The taste was fantastic. It was both sweet and smooth in the bitterness and citrus flavors of the hops. It was a big beer in taste and weight, but eminently drinkable and enjoyable. The 6.7 % ABV does get to you and this beer quickly goes down.

FacistCannonBall, Oct 25, 2008
Photo of tigerdoc
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours brilliant clarity amber color with white lacey head. Aroma is balanced toward the hoppy side with citrus, pineapple aromas and sweet caramel malts. Flavor is also balanced toward the hoppy side but with significant malt presence. Hops are very american: citrusy maybe a little resiny hop flavor balanced with sweet malt and moderate bitterness. Mouthfeel is full-bodied with moderate carbonation. Very drinkable delicious american ale. Unique style fresh hop flavor is awesome.

tigerdoc, Oct 25, 2008
Photo of bbothen
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep caramel color with a thick 2 finger deep head. Plenty of sticky lacing on glass.

Smells of sticky, earthy, piney hops. Distinct caramel malt aromas as well.Not as hoppy smelling as the Chico Estate version.

Bog caramel sweetness, earthy & sprucey hoppiness, more sweet toffee like maltiness. The freshness of the hops is noticeable & nice. Very nicely balanced.

Mediuem bodied, moderately carbonated, sticky, coating, lingering hoppiness.

Quite drinkable & all around satisfying.

An enjoyable fresh hop ale. Others in the style I enjoy more. But this one is totally acceptable. I enjoyed the Chico Estate version more.

bbothen, Oct 25, 2008
Photo of kmeves
3.68/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear deep copper color with a smallish head and lots of lacing. Aroma is medium sweet with strong grapefruit and caramel to a lesser extent. The flavor is nicely bitter and more pine shines through than does in the aroma. Full-bodied, crisp texture. Long dry and bitter finish.

kmeves, Oct 24, 2008
Photo of HopHead84
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a medium golden with a HUGE frothy head. The retention is fantastic and the lacing is outstanding. The aroma is of fresh mint, grapefruit, pine sap, and caramel malt. Delicious grapefruity fresh hops great my palate. The hops impart a nice level of bitterness that tastes of mint and herbs, and which is joined by a solid sweet caramel backbone. The mouthfeel is sticky and the carbonation is excellent.

HopHead84, Oct 24, 2008
Photo of katan
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

24 oz bottle

A - Dark amber to fully copper colored. Very very clear - great job of filtration. Head is strong at a 1/4" in and is very well retained. Internally the bubbling carbonation is strong and persistent.

S - The signature alpha acids of a wet hop are front and center on this beer. Very floral and sweet - but with some earthy undertones.

T - Starts off in almost perfect balance of malty barley flavors offset by a bitter but not hoppy flavor. The hops enter midstream, with more of the fresh hop smell. FInishes with the malty goodness finally taking over the bitterness. The aftertaste is decidedly bitter, which I imagine is the hop oils doing a good job of coating my palette.

M - Full of body and very coating. Two charactistics I would expect would shine in a beer of this much fermented barley and strong fresh hops. Only a slight amount of carbonation bite on the tongue.

D - A fairly drinkable beer. The interesting flavors are in balance in a way that doesn't cause me to grow tired of a one dimensional beer. The body of the beer is beginning to weigh on me some.

I'm pleased with this beer in that I like the fresh hop flavor, but in this case they don't make it so overt. Others want to knock you over with hops and lose all since of balance.

katan, Oct 24, 2008
Photo of stumac
4.75/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12th Release - 2008
Wet Hop Ale

pours a copper color with a huge frothy and bubbly cream colored head. great retentive lacing. the nose is a nice bouquet of floral hops, mildly spicy hops, piney hops, subtle sweet malts. the taste is piney hops, sweet malts, nice bitterness, kicks you in the tongue with spicy hops, slight citrus in the finish. a very crisp brew. tastes like a hoppy American Red Ale. medium body, medium spritzy carbo, semi dry finish

stumac, Oct 23, 2008
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2008 Release - Wet Hop Harvest

Appearance: Nice dark copper colored, soapy off-white head; a little carbonation action going on.

Smell: Pine, Hops, little caramel, little weak. I wish this beer had a much stronger aromatic punch to it.

Taste: Caramel malts create a nice balance with the pine resin hops. A little bit of smokiness, citrus, and nuttiness as well. You can definitely taste the pine resin hop oiliness. Still, flavor seems underdone. Not as hoppy as anticipated. Definitely doesn't really hit the spot for us hopheads.

Mouthfeel: Oily/somewhat slick with medium carbonation. Another category where this beer is good but not exceptional

Drinkability: It's not as good as we were hoping. But you could easily sit around drinking these all night long. Even our girlfriends like it. Fun drinking for the whole family!

ThreeWiseMen, Oct 22, 2008
Photo of lordofthewiens
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12th Release, 2008 Edition
The beer was amber in color with a thick, off-white head. A little bit of lacing.
Mostly floral aroma, with a little bit of citrus.
Pine and lavender taste, with some grapefruit. They complement each other quite well.
A smooth, easy to drink beer.

lordofthewiens, Oct 22, 2008
Photo of BeenJammin
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have not had any Sierra Nevada Harvest Ales before other than their Southern Hemisphere version. From what I was told and what I expected from this wet hop method was a very distinct piney and citrus aroma. This wasn't really the case. It seemed like there was some piney-like hops in the nose but it was dominated by malts. The apperance was spot on though. It has a nice copper look to it as well as a nice off white head. There was good head retention and great lacing. The taste had very good bitterness to it and there was quite a bit of citrus hop flavor to it. It also has a nice caramel like sweetness to it which makes it a pretty well balanced beer. The mouthfeel was full and I think that it is fairly drinkable with its great balance.

BeenJammin, Oct 21, 2008
Photo of brewdoc75
4.83/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I picked this beer up at the Four Firkins, quite possibly one of my favorite speciality beer stores.

This beer pours a clear copper to amber color. A crisp white head crowns the top. Artistic lace encases the sides of the glass as I enjoy this hoppy treat. The aromas are a definite hop fest. I get a strong grapefruit aroma at first. This is followed by a vast array of other citrus fruits. Not as overpowering as one would expect with a fresh hop ale. There is a faint sweetness from the malts as well. The hop flavor in this beer is phenomenal. You have to really appreciate the hop to appreciate this flavor. Raw floral, grapefruit flavors present initially. This is followed by a balanced malty sweetness. In the end of the my drink, I notice a nice piney bite. The hoppy bite in this beer is really present, but the bitterness really fits it well. The bitterness lingers to the next drink, but is really quite pleasant. The mouthfeel is pretty solid. Crisp and clean, just what I love about Sierra Nevada.

This is an exceptional beer. Definitely an iconic beverage. I don't think I've ever had a fresh hop ale as good as this one. Sierra Nevada has always been a symbol of quality. This beer is just another reason why they may be one of the greatest craft breweries out there. I am tempted to go pick up a case of this despite the cost at $6.50 a bottle. This beer is definitely worth it.

brewdoc75, Oct 21, 2008
Photo of dino213aa
4.7/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 Edition

I've really tried hard to review this with consideration to the style. I am not a big fan of pale ale's- especially Sierra Nevada's. However, this years SN Harvest Ale really asks me to reconsider my prejudices against this style.

A: Clear, deep amber with no gradation in color. Pours with minimal head but lots of intricate lacing in ~1-inch tiers.

S: Slightly toasty with whispers of lavender and citrus.

T&M: Personally I dislike pale ales because of bitter hops. That's it. However, this brew is incredibly balanced between bitterness and underlying character. There is a floral quality that reminds me of lavender, clover, grain with a touch of citrus reminiscent of plums or wild strawberries (as opposed to lemon). I can't imagine a pale ale tasting better than this, and by that measure I rate this brew as exceptional. Mouthfeel is crisp yet enduring.

D: Highly drinkable. I'd give this a 5 if I liked hops more.

Rarely does a beer invoke the kind of imagery and sensations as this brew has for me. Perfectly balanced and complex, this brew tantalizes the imagination and beckons me to drink more.

Very highly recommend.

dino213aa, Oct 20, 2008
Photo of ironlung
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 edition... still have bottles down the street!!

A: copper/amber really nice head (like all other harvest ales) good lacing down the tulip.

S: biscut malt and grassy hops.

T: wow this one ages pretty well. very little flavor loss. all I notice is that it's less snappy in the hop department than the latest version.

M: a little sticky but still very smooth an al around nice ipa.

D: very high. I'll probably go get another couple bottles and put in the celler to check this pioneer's journey through time.

ironlung, Oct 20, 2008
Photo of JBogan
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beautiful looking dark orange/copper with a solid and creamy thick head which leaves good lacing. A very attractive brew.

Smelled of the ever present SN pine along with some mellow hops to balance things out nicely. Not overly complex but inviting nonetheless.

Taste was a small step down from the scent. The pine was there but more in the background. The hops were smooth and not too in your face. I appreciated that. Some sweet malt present too.

Mouthfeel was somewhat on the thin side, but still quite acceptable. Not a lot of carbonation.

This is a good beer, but not quite up there with SN's best. As mentioned in an earlier post however, it's still a great bang for the buck.

JBogan, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of acrawf6
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a clear rich dark red amber with a nice frothy tan head that lingers for all of the beer, and with great lacing.

Smell. Has a very nice pine and citrus hop aroma that has a small touch of a metallic character to it, which i like. A small caramel sweetness comes out in big whiffs.

Taste. A very nice balance. Hops are very good and present with a citrus flavor with some of a pine in it. But the malt backbone really fills out the flavor too. Aftertaste is balanced well too.

Mouthfeel. Body is on the fuller side of medium. Great balance and good amount of carbonation.

Overall, an incredible beer. I really wish the would be available daily. Apa is a good and reliable style, but i never had one i found was a incredible beer, until i had this one. With the alc content and the hop presence, it makes me think this is a hybird of a apa and american ipa. Just a great beer all around.

acrawf6, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of racer2k
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

24oz. Bottle

A - Dark orange red hue with two fingers of cake batter head on the angled pour. The head thins out and creates a nice lacing on the sides of the glass as you sip.

S - Fresh cut green hop smell. The lawn of hops was just mowed it smells so fresh! Pine and citrus are also present with a hint of malt.

T - The first taste yields a pleasant malt flavor followed by a green hop bomb. There is a nice oily hop resin present in the taste with hints of citrus and grapefruit and pine.

M - Moderate carbonation but very smooth and tasty. Bitter moderate hop finish but not overwhelming. Hopheads will like the complexity of this monster.

D - Another excellent contribution to craft brewing by SN. This is almost as good as the SN Southern Harvest Fresh Hop but not quite. Glad I had a line of communication with my local beer store so that I was emailed when it came in.

racer2k, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of theboozecruise
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 version of the Harvest Ale... 12th release. I poured from a 24 oz. bottle into a goblet this time.

A orange-reddish hue, not a huge head, but lots of lacing around the sides of the goblet. A strong aroma of hops, dominating the nose on this one. The balance comes out on the first sip, a little bit of malt on the aftertaste in addition to the hops and hints of fruit. This one is bitter but not TOO bitter. Fantastic mouthfeel, leaves me wanting more right away.

This one gets better with each sip... not a heavy drinker, but a damn fine beer to sit back and enjoy.

theboozecruise, Oct 17, 2008
Photo of stephens101
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A huge 3-finger bubbly tan head clings to the glass for all it's worth before it leaves spots of lacing around the glass and some fluff right on top of the brew. Color is a clear copper. Potent hops at first are noticed on the nose, then a little citrus and pine. Tastes of perfect citrus hops with a good malt backbone and a spicy aftertaste. This is a perfectly balanced, light to medium bodied brew that doesn't kill you on the hop bite, but hits dead on the bullseye.

stephens101, Oct 17, 2008
Photo of RedChrome
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear body with a reddish copper hue. Head was a light tan color and held over an inch a few minutes. A few carbonation bubbles develop halfway up the body. Sticky lace clumps.

A very strong floral hop aroama leads off. A secondary hit of malt was remisicint of fresh baked rolls. A faint backing of pine scents.

Taste is surprisingly very malt sweetness heavy. Gritty pine resin is also quite strong on the tongue.

A nice viscocity with just enough carbonation to shift the flavors. Taste cling on the sides of tongue.

A good brew. Works with with a nice plate of Mexican food. Cheers to Sierra Nevada for a 12th release of this brew. Well worth the price for a try.

RedChrome, Oct 16, 2008
Photo of coldmeat23
3.4/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

GLASS: Capt. America for Prez Pint Glass (Yahooo!)
TEMP: Chilled to approx 45 degrees

First, I disagree with this being reviewed under the same entry as last years version, because this is a different bottle altogether. I thought about starting a new listing, but everyone else seems to be putting their reviews under this one so, I guess that I will, too.
Last years release (11th) was a dry-hopped version, while this years is wet-hopped. Last years was 6.2% abv while this years is 6.7% abv.

Clear, golden amber liquid, similar to maple syrup in appearance. Massive 4+ finger head with very good retention. Excellent lacing, very sticky.

Very hoppy nose. Very citrusy. Lots of lemon zest and tons of grapefruit. Lighter floral tones. Slight hint of fresh-cut grass. Some sweet malt notes are detected.

Big bitter hop bite smacked me in the face, right out of the gate. Piney, citrusy and floral all combine for an abundant attack. Flavors of grapefruit, pine resin, and bitter citrus. Light malt sweetness is in there, but it's way down deep.

Good mouthfeel in general, but I find it abit on the waterey side.

I can see that this would make an easy drinking bottle, but for me, the hops are too over dominant. I might pick up a few bottles to cellar for a year or two, to see how they age.

coldmeat23, Oct 16, 2008
Photo of pershan
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer on-tap at Frisco Grille in Columbia, MD.

The beer poured a clear, deep, reddish-amber with a thick, almond head into a pint glass. The aroma was of fresh, piney hops. The initial flavor was of sweet malt and hops, with a fairly quick transition to a bitter hop finish. Beautiful carbonation and lacing matched with the nicely balance hop profile - another quality brew from SN.

pershan, Oct 16, 2008
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 3,277 ratings.