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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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,394 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,394
Reviews: 1,482
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 9.57%
Wants: 180
Gots: 183 | 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:
Beer added by: jmatthew on 10-15-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,394 | Reviews: 1,482 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cvstrickland
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 24-ounce fatty bomber bottle poured into my new Duck-Rabbit snifter yields a brilliant bright copper body with a finger of fine, pale ecru foam atop. The foam setttles very slowly but is at first too soft to leave much lacing, choosing instead to slump lazily at the sides of the glass. The head casts a thin line and a web or two of lacing on the glass, but as the drink progresses, the foam rises in reinforced intensity, resting in a misshapen, cratered moonscape of canyons and ridges, and leaving foamy blobs stuck on the glassware.

At once the hoppy aromas leap from the glass. Dank, green, sticky, musky, herbal notes pervade the local atmosphere, punching noses and watering eyes, allow only a sliver of grapefruity citrus through. Pungent. Heavenly. As the drink warms, out comes the citrus; lemon zest, orange juice, and fragrant key lime.

The taste is pungently herbal with a splash of bitter citrus. A solid pale and caramel malt backbone provides a nice crisp feel and fine mellow sweetness until the forces of herbal hopdom kick the crap out of it; the drink finishing a bit dusty with a green-grassy, drying bitterness.

With mad hoppiness, great taste, a superb heavy-medium body and a sizzle of fine carbonation, I'll be adding the 13th Release of Harvest Wet Hop Ale to my list of beers I'm anxiously awaiting. Super-drinkable like just about everything else Sierra Nevada offers. Awesome brew.

Photo of avalon07
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a slightly cloudy texture. There was a big, foamy, long-lasting head and excellent lacing.

S: Smelled mainly of hops, mild malt and citrus (possibly grapefruit).

T: While the hops were front and center in the taste department, they weren't as overwhelming as I would have expected. Still, that combined with malt and citrus make for a tasty beer.

M: A highly carbonated beer, with a somewhat slick finish. Full-bodied.

D: Overall, this is a drinkable, well constructed beer. Not exactly what I expected, but good nonetheless.

Photo of tmitch75
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cool 24 oz bottle. Reddish amber color with a slight haze and a huge sticky off-white head that leaves tons of sticky lace rings all around the glass.

Full herbal and pine hop smell with light citrus and just a touch of malty sweetness in the background.

Nice oily hop flavor runs the gamut of hop flavors without the overpowering bitterness typically present with this much hop flavor.

Medium to full body, nice and smooth.

This is an excellent hoppy ale and a great reason to look forward to the fall. Could be a good hoppy beer for non-hop lovers because of the full hop flavors without as much bitterness.

Tasted on 11/10/08.

Photo of BeerBelcher
3.76/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was pretty non-plused when I first sipped this beer, but the more I drank, the more I began to detect subtleties I enjoyed in this beer. Thanks to SurlySober for bringing a bottle to my house to split.

Appearance is a very rich amber color (particularly for an IPA) with very little head. Aroma is very mildly hoppy with lots of malty sweetness. Flavor was moderately hoppy with some substantial maltiness that just seemed to get better and better with each sip, starting off a bit disappointing but winding up pretty good. Mouthfeel was pretty substantial and thick.

Pretty good; I would recommend this.

Photo of snaotheus
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark honey color, clear with fine head and strong lacing. My fiancee says it smells like soap and pine trees. I don't get the soap.

Powerful bitter hoppy pine flavor with a light caramel background. Not perfectly balanced, but tasty.

Light and clean mouthfeel with a neat tingle. Probably too bitter to be greatly drinkable, but it's a beer I'm quite happy to have tried.

Still beautiful. Giant head. Taste is a little muted. Nice and chewy.

Again, pretty. Again giant head. Nice grapefruit rind bitterness.

Photo of Drew966
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sierra Nevada 12th Release Harvest Wet Hop Ale pours a clear copper color with an off white head from a brown twenty four ounce bottle. The aroma is hoppy, morstly citrusy but also a bit pine like. The flavor seems the opposite, more pine like hop than citrus. There's a solid malt presence in the background, but the hops are the star of this show. Recommended.

Photo of nc41
4.88/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is really a great Ale in every single way. Pours a nice coppery color with a tremendous head that lasts to the end of your glass. My 1st glass I was almost to the bottom and still had a 1/8 layer on top. I would say this is a very full bodied hearty Ale, that has a nice hoppy bite, but also has a lot more going on. Very nicely balanced between the malt and hops. I'm a hop head, and this easily satisfies my cravings, and IMO the best I've had from SN. I would love to see this one available year round, it's a great winter brew without the quirky spicing, and would be just as easy to drink in the summer.

Photo of dancinwillie
3.27/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep amber, more brown than red, however, garnet highlights when held up to the light, medium brown when sitting on my desk. Sponge-like light tan head that begins at about 2 fingers high, then drops to about a finger, and remains. Beautiful lacing remains, two distinct lines about a centimeter apart surround the insides of my goblet.

Aroma seems to be made up primarily of piney hops.

Taste is more balanced than I was expecting. I thought it the hops would dominate, or at least tip the scale in that direction. But instead, the hops are in there, and they seem to have a deeper flavor. Pine, citrus, and some grassy notes come into play. The malt plays a big role as well, and is a sweet, bready foil to the bitterness of the hops. Picking up a slight herbal flavor also.

Mouthfeel is medium full, slick, and astringent. In other words good to go.

Overall, I would probably drink this more often if it were available on a year round basis. It's not the best IPA out there, definitely worth a try, however, and I will try to check back in from year to year.


Photo of AustinBeerLvr
3.24/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured a 24 ounce bottle into a English pint style glass.

As with most all of Sierra Nevada's offerings, this is a beautiful beer in a glass, as it has a deep red, copper body, with an excellent amount of head and lacing. Being a veteran SN drinker, I expected a lot of hops in the aroma. Surprisingly, I picked up on a significant amount of caramel and toffee like sweetness along with the spicy citrus hop notes.

First sip was even more of a surprise, as last year's harvest offering was much hoppier. This year's version is actually almost dominated by a somewhat coarse, caramel and toffee malt sweetness. As the beer warms, the trademark fruity ester flavors become more present and blend nicely with the hops at the end. Even more surprising, for an IPA, the hops seem to struggle to balance out the toffee malt flavors. Mouthfeel is very solid, a bit creamy, but just the right weight for an IPA.

Overall, this is somewhat of a letdown, in my opinion. It almost tastes more like an ESB rather than an IPA. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't looking for just another hoppy beer, but the malt character seems to be just too strong and somewhat rough in this brew and seems to clash rather than blend with the hops. Noting horrible, but it appears SN wanted to try something new this year, and this one just didn't quite do it.

As a side note, their Celebration Ale this season seems to also be maltier than last years, and in my opinion, this years is probably the best one they have ever done.

Photo of waldoiverson
3.71/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Brilliant copper, very fine foam with wonderful solid lacing and tiny bubbles

S: citrus but with a more woody overtone, can smell some bread-like malt which makes for a nice balance, i get a bit of cherry, too

T: a very raw and somewhat floral hop flavor that starts sweet and then the bitterness really hits in one big wave. the malt in the aroma is not as well balanced in the taste.

M: Smooth but not cloying, carbonation seems to help cleanse the tongue of some of the bitterness

D: This is a bit of a wildcard beer with the raw smell and taste and big balloon of bitterness, but I like it and suggest others with a love of hops would, too.

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

Poured from a 24 oz. bottle.

Clear light amber color with a dense off-white head. Left lace all the way down the glass.

Strong hop nose with piney notes (Chinook hops?). Malt aroma in the background.

Sweet malt on the first taste, then the hops overtake the taste buds with a balanced bitterness. Finishes a little dry.

Lively on the tongue, and the hops leave a slight metallic aftertaste.

Very drinkable - good balance between malt and hops.

Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a brownish copper body with good carbonation that leads to a two-finger head that slowly receeds. A hoppy aroma with mild citric and floral notes along with hints of sweet malts.
A hop blitz when I first sipped it, with a good smoothness and some creaminess that goes down easy with predominant citric hop notes and some sweet malts like caramel and/or honey in there. A refreshing beer with a dry backbite mixing hops and maybe some roasted malts. While a very good beer that I enjoyed thoroughly, it is very similiar to regular Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and is worth a try only.

Photo of dhd1491
3.83/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear, copper with medium-dense head of beige bubbles. Little lacing. Hoppy, full-bodied flavor, but not floral. Some sweet maltiness. My only qualm is with a bit of a sharp bite and some cereal flavor. Similar to their pale ale in taste, but much more robust and flavorful.

Photo of opwog
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Now listening to: Aimee Mann - Wise Up

A- Cpeer color with a huge head. Had to pour in small amounts, as this kept foaming up.
S- grass and bread at the same time. Maybe a little piney.
T- pine and citrus come first and then mild malt
M- Maybe it takes getting use to the wet hop in the bottle, as this seemed a little biting which was also emphasized by heavy carbonation.
D- The elements keep it interesting, but the carbonation made me feel a bit bloated.

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

I grabbed a bomber of this while visiting a friend in Austin, Texas. This beer pours a medium copper, with a copius amount of foamy white head, with lots of lacing. The aroma is of citrus and pine hops, with a slight sweet malt presence. The taste has a moderate pine hop bite, and a smooth malt backbone, quite balanced. There is a mild carbonation, with no noticeable warming. This is very easy to drink, a decent offering from this brewery.

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

24oz bottle

Pours a crystal clear amber with two fingers of cake like light tan head. Great retention and swaths of sticky lace ring the glass. What a gorgeous beer.

Scent is fresh bread and dough with floral and grassy hops.

Taste is again fresh bread and dough. Floral and citrus hops. Leafy fresh hops. Orange and grapefruit. Juicy hop oil. A touch of caramel. The hop profile, though juicy and delicious, seems understated and subtle.

Mouth is big and slick.

Drinkability is wonderful.

I've come to love wet hop ales. The juicy oily fresh flavor and the slipper, slick mouth feel are fantastic. This is, as expected, a tasty example of a style I love.

Photo of dwalters
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance is a reddish copper with an off white head, excellent lacing. The aroma is hops, a little grassy/citrus/flower, very good smell. The initial taste is smooth with the bitters hitting later and building flavor on the back of the tongue that is very good almost chewy. For any HopHead this would be an excellent beer.

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.39/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured amber with an off white head that disipated. Nose is very nice, the fresh (wet) hops really give it a different aroma with a nice malt backbone. Taste is of caramel malt, but the hops seem to be very subtle compared to a dry hopped beer, nice hop flavor with a tad bit of bitterness at the the end. Definatly a beer I could have a few of, and one of the better SN beers I have ever had. Smelled and tasted GREAT

Photo of Strix
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear reddish-amber, with a huge foamy head, nice retention and lacing.

Smells like fresh bread, with a citrus hop finish.

Tastes of piney citrus hops. Finishes with an orange-peel aftertaste. I also get, bread, lemon, and even mint in there somewhere.
Really surprisingly thirst-quenching. Hits in the right spot.

Mouthfeel resinous, medium to thin.

This is really an enjoyable IPA. I'm loving all of SN's special brews.

Photo of whynot44
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy amber color with a substantial foamy ivory head that disipates slowly to a thin layer then persists to the end producing some nice lacing.

The aroma is pine needles, grapefruit with a background of caramel malt.

The taste is also primarily pine and grapefruit with a slightly sweet caramel malt base. The finish is slightlky dry with a lingering piney aftertaste.

Medium bodied, smooth and easy tro drink. Hops are a bit subdued compared to some American IPAs but there is still plenty for the hop heads in a nicely balanced version. Well worth a try if you like IPAs.

Photo of lordeche
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours copper with frothy off-white head. Aroma is bitter and flowery, very herbal, with a pale malt backbone. Flavor is light with hints of chocolate, caramel, and vanilla malt and a flowery, herbal finish. Not much bitterness. Palate is extremely smooth and full, with minimal stickiness. Pretty good.

Photo of gabeerfan
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy medium-ish amber. Thick, off-white/orangy head that takes a while to fall to a thin cap.
Somewhat more subtle aromas than I expected. The hops are more piney/earthy with hints of grapefruit. Lots of toasted bread and caramel, hints of honey and brown sugar.
Hops are more earthy in the flavor with the pine 2nd and grapefruit almost in the background. Malts are pretty sweet. Lots of caramel, brown sugar and honey. Toasted bread flavors in there too.
Somewhat oily mouthfeel, but the carbonation helps keep that at bay.
Pretty drinkable. Good flavors make this an easy drinker.
This is much more subtle than I was expecting from SA, but I like it alot. Good to see some sanity coming from the West Coast. Highly recommended.

Photo of smanders
3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from a 24 ounce bottle purchased from the Total Wine in Chantilly, VA. 6.7% ABV

Appearance - dark amber with a robust head. Great lacing.

Smell - spicy hops and sweet caramel.

Taste - more sweetness than expected from the aroma, quickly followed by bitter hops. Aftertaste is more sweet than spicy.

Mouthfeel - oily but well carbonated.

Drinkability - This is a very drinkable IPA that may confuse some hopheads due to the high malt/sweet notes.

Photo of Beerbuddha
4.8/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: This beer poured a nice copper color with a HUGE fluffy cloud of an off white head. Great lacing the stuck around the life of the beer.

Smell: I was hit immediately with a wonderful piney hop aroma with a nice hint of sweet maltiness. Lots of earthy aromas with wonderful citrus and spice characters.

Taste: This beer is extremely well balanced. It has a nice piney bitterness with hints of citrus but is balanced with some nice sweet malts. The citrus and spice comes through in the taste as well as the nose.

Mouthfeel: Nice oily medium body with medium carbonation. Has a nice dry bitternes in the finish.

Overall: A fantastic brew! I'm glad I picked up two and good thing I ordered 4 cases at work also since we're down to our last case. I'm not a big hop fan but this one is really making me reconsider.

Photo of slayer3604
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a- amazing head retention, just a huge cotton candy monstrosity climbing up the walls of the glass and sticking to it like ivy to brick! The color is what earned the rating i gave it...nothing special just an amber color with trickles of upwelling carbonation.

S- I had to struggle to get a "GOOD" nose off of this beer by furiously shaking it around in my st bernardus goblet and what i got was a slightly earthy, sharp malt and light biscuit aroma.

T/M- Cloying malt, slight pangs of bitterness, a nice firm body, but with a character bereft of something worthy of a 4.5 or 5

D- The price is right for the beer that you get! Nothing especially crazy about this beer, its got a cool bottle/label, and passes for a better than normal beer but I dont see myself going out of the way to buy it again.

Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 3,394 ratings.