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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.

3,279 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,279
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: 3,279 | Reviews: 1,465 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Douglas14
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pure burnt orange color with a nice thick, fluffy head. Unfortunately, the head resides too quick...but it does leave some nice lace.

Obviously, it smells intensely of hops. A nice surprising characteristic is a doughy, bread like aroma.

Pine and oily hop resins are easily distinguishable in the taste. It has a great, strong hoppy flavor, yet isn't overly bitter...I feel very few brewers can execute this characteristic on such strongly hopped beers.

It has a medium body and finishes clean.

Overall, great beer.

Douglas14, Jan 12, 2008
Photo of bennetj17
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this over a month ago, review is from notes. Clear copper appearance, thin head that dissolves quickly as only light carbonation supports from below. The aroma seemed a bit weak to me, with a hint of fruit and clean hops hitting the nose.

Lightly sweetened toasty malt flavors balance well with the fresh, zesty hops in the taste, followed by a handsomely bitter finish. Overall the the flavor is very well rounded. Medium thickness, fine tingly carbonation, and decent foaminess give it a rather "full" mouthfeel.

Nothing about this beer wows you except it is so well balanced you could drink it all night. Don't expect your typical big seasonal beer and just enjoy this brew for its great drinkablility...

bennetj17, Jan 11, 2008
Photo of Jason
4.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I was really surprised to find bottles of this beer at my local East Boston Kappy's, just more proof that popularity of good beer is still on the rise.

24oz brown bottle. Tarnish copper penny color, good clarity and the lacing is out of this world. Smells of green hops cut right off of the vine, a little vegetable and woody. Mild fruity esters and toasted grain in the nose as well. So damn smooth and creamy, a perfect level of carbonation in this solid medium bodied brew. Big fresh cut grass and oily hop character to start, bitterness is there but not harsh at all. Maltiness is bready with undertones of crust and caramel. Faint fruitiness from the alcohol and hops, finishes a little bitter with a broad flavor of fresh hop oil.

I'll be heading back to the store to get a few more bottles as this easily cured my hop fix. I look forward to this beer every year for at least the past few years.

Jason, Jan 08, 2008
Photo of younger35
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this 24oz wide bomber up at the Boise Co-op for around $3.50ish. Glad they got in a second shipment because I missed the first (was drinking too much of Deschutes Hop Trip to take notice). Drank from my Big Horn Mai Bock pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a semi-clear yellowish orange with a nice big fluffy white head. Leaves a beautiful cap and collar the entire duration of the beer along with plenty of nice spotty lacing.
Smell- Like all of these fresh hop beers it’s just loaded with lots of hop goodness. Loads of pine and fresh citrus with a pineapple taking the lead. Once it warms the sweet malt background shows a bit more adding a bit of balance.
Taste- Like the nose, the hops are indeed the star! Not quite as citrusy as the nose but there is definitely plenty of grapefruit pith. A tad dirty with lots of fresh cut grass and a hint of oily pine. A bit of caramel malt in the background that grows as the beer warms. Nice bitter aftertaste that leaves a floral like sensation on the back of my throat.
Mouthfeel- Very crisp, clean and fresh with a slick oily feel and medium sharp carbonation.
Drinkability- This is a really tasty brew that I thoroughly enjoyed. I don’t think it quite has the balance of say Deschutes Hop Trip but I’m not a huge hop head either. This is probably more of a “true” fresh hop beer because the hops are more pronounced. I haven’t had a bad Sierra Nevada brew and this one doesn’t even come close. Definitely worth picking up.

younger35, Jan 08, 2008
Photo of zeff80
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

24oz bottle acquired via trade with dertbert

A - Poured out a cloudy, amber/orange with a very foamy, off-white, two-finger head. It left nice rings of lace.

S - It smelled of fresh hops and grasses. It really had a nice floral aroma. There was also a roasted malt nose.

T - It had a great carmel roasted malt flavor. Good hop kick with hints of citrus.

M - It was crisp and very sharp. A medium-bodied beer.

D - Great APA. You can really tell how fresh hops make a difference in a beer.

zeff80, Jan 07, 2008
Photo of yelterdow
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Total Wine in River Edge in the Fall. 2007 (11th Edition) served at fridge temperature in an imperial pint glass. This is the first I've seen of this offering from Sierra Nevada.

Appearance- Rich and orange, this beer pours beautifully... the gigantic four-finger head pops and hisses slowly down from the rim, leaving some of the best lacing I've ever seen. Gobs of cobwebs with a spongy center that condenses and sticks around the entire duration.

Smell- Big, aromatic hop resins dominate the nose... freshness is truly evident, and makes this beer stand out from any other Pale Ale I've had except for maybe one or two served on cask. Notes of pine ring out among a suggestion of malts, overall a hop lover's aroma.

Taste- Exquisitely bittering, the hops perform so tremendously (this sounds like football, I know)... as big and fresh as they are, they carry themselves with poise. In the middle, the malts deliver nicely and balance the hops. The finish is smooth and very easy, with the "wet" qualities again being the distinguishing factor.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Smooth, soft, and light in the mouth... I think that it could benefit from a little more activity and texture. Otherwise, this tasting goes down as my absolute favorite APA from a bottle yet... as with many things in the food and beverage world, fresh is best.

yelterdow, Jan 07, 2008
Photo of mpyle
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

App - Rich pale amber color, and very clear. Poured a huge moussy head with good retention, but was drinking it very warm (60 F?) Good lacing left behind

Aroma - Pine, grapefruit/citrus from the hops, some caramel malt sweetness. Quite balanced and clean - no single aroma element dominates.

Flavor - A burst of fresh hop flavor early, but enough malt backbone to sustain. A bit solventy in the middle (hops or alcohol?). No sharp transition to the back end - finishes bitter, but in a gentle way. Some malt sweetness carries through the finish as well.

MF - Medium body and carbonation, no astringency, some pleasant subtle alcohol warming.

D'ability - A different kind of hop bomb. Very pleasant - not overly bitter despite being quite hoppy. IBUs are under control, and a very pleasant big APA.

mpyle, Jan 06, 2008
Photo of sfoley333
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into Pizza Port 7th annual Real Festivale int glass. Poured a copper color with slight red tint. The head was white, thick, and foamy with good retention and lacing. Smell light pine citrus yeasty aromoa. Taste heavy citrus rind and pine flavor, wish that the malt flavors were bigger. However with a light crispy mouthfeel and a hearty drinking IPA bitterness, this harvest ale with wet hops is a very enjoyable beer to drink.

sfoley333, Jan 06, 2008
Photo of ericj551
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Harbenst pours a orange copper with a thick bubbly head. The aroma is fresh citrusy hops, earthy and almost metallic. The flavor is just packed with citrusy hops, not bitter but just tons of delicious hops. A slight malty caramel sweetness come through but gives way to solid bitterness. I like the idea of this beer and I'd love to try it even fresher.

ericj551, Jan 06, 2008
Photo of stephendr
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. glass bottle- color of amber, with a frothy off white colored head - nose of nice hops, fresh and light malts– taste of nice fresh hops, light malts, and resin- body is medium , and with medium carbonation – aftertaste of grape fruit, resin, bitter, and semi-dirty

stephendr, Jan 05, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


First off I love this 24 ounce bottle. I don't think I have ever had a 24 ounce bottle of beer.

Pours a crystal clear orange amber with a very nice sized crème head that has excellent staying power. Nose is very sticky, piney hops. Flavor is interesting. Kind of like a nice and thickly hopped ale with a leafy thing mixed in on the backend (to appease the whole "harvest" thing). Feel has a lot of carbonation to it and the liquid is pretty well bodied. Overall this is a good APA. Definitely smooth and robust. The bite is a bit much on the bubble, but it is definitely worth going for.

RblWthACoz, Jan 01, 2008
Photo of John1985
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beautiful amber color with bright white 1" head, lacing is prominent down the mug. Fresh citrus hop aroma, flavor is a burst of grapefruit, nicely countered by caramel malt, finish is balanced with mild bitterness. One of the most drinkable SN's I've had. I can wipe out a 24oz bottle in no time wishing I had more.

I hope this comes out in six packs next year.

John1985, Dec 31, 2007
Photo of prototypic
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2007--11th Edition

Appearance: It pours a clear, golden to amber color with a full, thick two finger head. Retention was great and lacing was very thick.

Smell: It has an initial yeasty smell followed up by a sweet, caramel malt aroma. Piney hops are very strong. Light citrus scents are noticable on the tail.

Taste: Very crisp and refreshing. Citrus flavors (grapefruit and maybe some mango) blend well with caramel malts to give it a sweet taste. Hops kick in and provide a perfect bitter twist. Bitterness outbalances the sweet taste, but it's far from being overly bitter. Slightly yeasty-bready aftertaste.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's light bodied, very well carbonated, and very smooth and refreshing. Extremely drinkable. I could drink this all day during the summer. Overall, very nice offering from Sierra Nevada. Highly recommended.

prototypic, Dec 31, 2007
Photo of Riggsy
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

24 oz bottle - 2 servings poured into Sam Adams glass.

A: Pours clear, light amber in color. Two finger slightly off white head. Recedes to lacing and retains well.

S: Wow, the fresh hops really burst out. Citrusy Pac N'west hops dominate the aroma.

T: Again, the hops are the name of the game in this one. Real good hop flavor, again citrusy and some minor grassy notes and it's there all the way to the finish. Some biscuityness from the malt The malt does a good job supporting all these hops.

M: Medium - full mouthfeel with low medium carbonation. The hop oils lend some slickness.

D: Throughly enjoyable brew, especially if you favor things on the hoppier side of center.

Riggsy, Dec 29, 2007
Photo of jmz62565
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear coppery amber honey with a giant white foamy head. The head lasts forever and leaves great lacing. The smell is a mix of sweet malt and hops. A nice citrus and carmel mix. The taste is a mix of bitter and citrus hops. Sweet malt makes it's self known in the aftertase making this a complex and enjoyable brew from one of the classic American breweries.

jmz62565, Dec 27, 2007
Photo of dogger6253
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reddish-orange with an amber base, fairly clear. A nice strong head is on top, tan color. The head falls with time to a slight film. The smell is of strong hops - very floral with bits of wheat and oranges.

The taste is really bitter, strong hops, very floral and rich. There is some vanilla and oranges. The flavor moves into a drier hop flavor, very crisp with a little bit of spice.

I'd call this medium bodied, moderately carbonated and highly refreshing. Surprisingly easy to drink, this really hits the spot.

dogger6253, Dec 26, 2007
Photo of ATLbeerDog
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2007 “11th” Edition

Poured beautifully orange reddish brown with a 1inch head from a 24oz bottle. Smell – intense aroma of hops similar to a DIPA. Smooth taste with an exceptional mouth feel. The highly hopped ale has hints of pine but the hops are really in charge here, causing a slightly bitter taste…even so this is a highly drinkable beer. Having the ABV at just over 6% also helps to make this yearly seasonal very drinkable.

I cannot help but wonder how our current hop shortage might affect this beer and other highly hopped beers later in year 2008.

ATLbeerDog, Dec 25, 2007
Photo of beerphilosopher
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crisp, clean medium bronze color with a thin, bubbly off-white head that dissipates fairly quickly. Spots of lacing dot the inside of the glassware. The nose is incredible - very fresh, aromatic hops like they were squeezed into the bottle. Floral, herbal, and some citrus notes break through right off the bat. A slight sweetness accompanies the hops, making this beer smell absolutely terrific. I could use this in an air-freshener! I mean that in a good way, of course. The palate is lively and full of fresh hop flavors as well. Extremely floral and clean with enough malt backbone to keep a good hop/malt balance going. The mouth feel is full, but does not come across as overly thick or sticky. Finishes slightly sweet and leaves a pleasant floral hop taste in the mouth. Very drinkable if you dig hops. This isn't your typical American hop bomb, by any stretch ... what's going on here is much more subtle. There is enough in-your-face hop presence here, though, to deter the typical light lager drinker. A truly quality beer in a rather rare style - it doesn't get much better!

beerphilosopher, Dec 23, 2007
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 24oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep orange/amber color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of floral hops, fruity citrus and caramelized malt.

T: The taste is very well-balanced. There's a good, strong hops presence up front that is quickly followed by sweet flavors of citrus and caramel. Eventually, as the sweetness fades, the hops bitterness starts to take dominance. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Very tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style even though you could argue that this is an IPA rather than an APA. This is a very enjoyable beer that I could drink for a long time.

TheManiacalOne, Dec 23, 2007
Photo of tronester
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber with a medium off-white head. Smells of lemon. Taste is hoppy, fresh citrus taste, slightly grassy, with a good toasty malt in the background. Surprisingly balanced with good bitterness from the hops. The carbonation is slightly high, and the beer has a full mouthfeel. Very drinkable, a very good tasting beer. This is the first wet-hop beer I've had, and I plan on buying this again next year when it comes out.

tronester, Dec 23, 2007
Photo of Viggo
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

biegaman brought this one.

Pours a clear amber, huge and thick off white head forms, tons of lacing, looks great, good retention. Smell is very flowery, citrus and floral, bread, alcohol, lots of light fruits, very fresh hop aroma, very nice. Taste is perfumy, lots of floral and citrus freshness, caramel and bready malt, minerals, more fresh hops, great bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, bit of warmth, very crisp flavour, significant bitterness, but highly enjoyable. Thanks a lot Jan!

Viggo, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of roblowther
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Rerddish copper with a dense white head that leaves nice sticky lacing. The smell is hops but with a nice caramel note backing it. The taste is wonderful, smooth and spicy. The hops are everywhere but not overpowering. The mouthfeel is silky and maybe even buttery. I am not a hops fan and yet this beer is right up my alley. This one may convert me. The drinkability is very good. The smooth character has led me to almost drain the bottle before I've finished reviewing it. Well done, boys, well done!

roblowther, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I heard a lot of good things about this beer - both on here and from the stores around here that had it stocked. There's never been a Sierra Nevada brew that I drank and didn't enjoy, so I had high expectations for this. The 24 oz. bottle, as a few other BA's have said on here, is an idea that should be more than a rarity!

Out of all the 150+ beers that I've rated on here, this may have had the strongest aroma! I could smell it more than 3 feet away from the bottle, as I opened it up, but the pour wasn't quite up to that. It had the beautiful little bubbles that I've grown accustomed to seeing in a SN beer, and the head was nice, but not overwhelming. The lacing was abover averaget too, since it's lasted on my glass for most of my drinking session.

Then there's the taste. Is it great - yes. It's not as strong as in the Celebration or the Anniversary, but it's doesn't have as much of the resin and butter-like aspects of the flagship Pale Ale. This is my first time having a "wet" hopped beer, and I think it has quite a bit to offer. Of course, it's hoppy, with a strong pine, floral, and citrus kick to it, but it doesn't all occur up front. Between the big bottle and the taste coming in the back, this is extremely smooth for it's style, and is slowly growing on me as I work my way down the bottle. I don't taste much of any spice here, but this brew seems to have some of the characteristics of ginger, which is not a bad thing at all! The "snap" just isn't as noticeable here.

The 6.20% ABV is just right for this beer, since it can hardly be felt, and sneaks up on you like the flavors do. Even though this has a fall release, it can be enjoyed any time of the year, since it's neither too strong, nor too spicy, nor too warming, in it's attributes. Any hopheads or SN fans out there won't be disappointed by this - it's well worth going out of the way to find.

JerzDevl2000, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of cjgator3
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

24oz bottle poured into an imperial pint glass. Pours a dark brownish amber color with a nice creamy off-white head with great retention and lacing. The aroma is sweet malt and fresh hops. The taste is surprisingly balanced with a nice malt backbone that complements a fresh bitter hop taste in the finish. Overall, this is one of the better beers from the Sierra Nevada lineup that is highly recommended.

cjgator3, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of Bitterbill
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I bought this bottle from South Bay Drugs. Thanks Joey!

This pours from 24oz bottle into my new Wasatch dimpled mug(thanks, John) a nice clear copper with about a 1 finger head of foam.

The smell is very hoppy and spicy.

The taste is the nose to a T. Hoppy and spicy and the hoppiness is on the very dry side. I mean *very* dry. The mouthfeel is very silky smooth and I can just notice some of the alcohol after the swallow. Man, this Ale is dry. In a side by side, I think I would prefer the Celebration but this is still some pretty good stuff. I'm glad I sought it out but I don't think I'd do it again. Too dry for my tastes.

Update Nov 1, 2012:

The first time the Northern Hemisphere has shown up in town. $6.99 for the 24oz bottle. I complained, 5 years ago, that it was too dry of a beer for me and after sipping on the bottle I just bought today, I give myself a kick in the buttocks. It's dry but the wet hops are kicking it with the spices and I'm enjoying this a lot. Score adjusted..

Bitterbill, Dec 21, 2007
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 3,279 ratings.