Sticke Pilsner - Beer Camp #43 (Best Of Beer Camp: Imperial Pilsner) - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sticke Pilsner - Beer Camp #43 (Best Of Beer Camp: Imperial Pilsner)Sticke Pilsner - Beer Camp #43 (Best Of Beer Camp: Imperial Pilsner)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

432 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 432
Reviews: 186
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 10.58%
Wants: 5
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mcallister on 02-18-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 432 | Reviews: 186
Reviews by beermanbrian:
More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
3.42/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a straw color, almost light-gold in the center; excellent clarity throughout the beer as a load of carbonation bubbles rush to the top where they meet a foamy and frothy white head. Decent lacing, although the retention wasn't much. Lots of malt on the nose at first; sweet pilsner malts, lightly toasted grains, mild bread. As it warms up, there's a very light "creamed corn" aroma that comes out; not vastly unpleasant, but sort of out of place and just "off" a bit. Nice, mellow hop aromas fill in the middle - floral, grassy, and earthy with a signature musty aroma to them. Light notes of lemon zest and fresh citrus brighten up the tail end.

The pilsner malt is heavy in the taste, showing lots of tamed sweetness; bread, grains, barley. The weird corn flavor comes back, maybe even a little bit stronger on the palate. Still isn't enough to make this beer unenjoyable, though, it just has a strange pungency to it. The hops provide a crisp bitterness, chock full of grass, earth, must, and floral notes, complete with a light citrus peel and lemon zestiness that leaves your mouth feeling refreshed after each sip. Bitterness is low, but pretty on-point for this style of beer. Makes itself known without wearing out its welcome - this isn't an IPA, after all. Thin-medium bodied, maybe even a bit heavier than expected, dry and crispy finish with a slick mouth feel and medium carbonation.

I've never really been disappointed by Sierra Nevada, I just wish I wasn't getting that strange corn aroma/flavor. I feel like it shouldn't have been there. That was essentially one of the only things holding this back from being a great pilsner.

Photo of MadScientist
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This is a light golden beer with excellent clarity. The isn't much of a head but the thin white foam is persistant and doen't fade.

S: A moderate floral hops aroma with moderately-low pilsner malt aroma. It has that wonderful gram cracker like aroma. Piney and slightly citrus hops aroma come through as it warms.

T: Pilsner malt with a big piney and spicy hops flavor hit the palate first. There is a some what herbaceous character to the hops (could be my allergies messing with me, I'll have to try this one again when I can breath again). The balance is moderately bitter with a light but lingering bitterness after the dry finish.

M: A crisp medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation and a light warmth from the alcohol.

O: This is no lawnmower beer it's more like an Americanized german pilsner having far more hops and bitterness but not IPA like along with a somewhat noticeably high alcohol content. I would defiantly enjoy a couple of these in a sitting; I'd like to see this on tap sometime.

Photo of Billolick
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle purchased as single from DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY. No freshness or bottling info.

Pours super clear and light straw in color. Off white head stays at about the half a finger level. leaves some thicker strands and bits of lacing.

Lemony nose with some honey, grass and malt.

More lemon on the palate, with a moderate helping of tea infused hops.

Light body wise, with moderate crispness and snap.

Ehhh, not really doing a lot for me. Would work as a warm weather brew to wash down a meal. But beyond that not really anything special going on here.

Photo of bsp77
4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Pilsner glass.

Appearance: Rich gold with large white head which leaves sticky lacing.

Smell: Much more citrusy and tropical than any Pilsner should be (not a bad thing). Some light hay like graininess. The crazy hop smell dissipates a little quickly, and then it smells more like a standard Pils.

Taste: Typical Pilsner malt backbone of apple, straw and hay. The hops are a great counterpoint, with a little of the more American tropical flavor, but also some more spicy and floral German hop flavor.

Feel: More medium bodied, sticky and resinous than a standard Pils. High carbonation and a dry finish, but not as dry as the best Pilsners.

Overall: Interesting off-style take on the Pilsner. Quite delicious, but the Sticke Pilsner name should have used for the variety pack release. Imperial Pilsner is just stupid, as there is nothing Imperial about this. On the other hand, the Oatmeal Stout from the same pack is 9% and not labeled Imperial. Epic fail for Sierra Nevada marketing.

Photo of MattyG85
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass. From the 2012 Beer Camp pack.

Appearance: Pours a bright and clear golden orange with lots of rising bubbles. Huge five fingers of creamy white head with good retention. Leaves a lot of lacing clinging to the glass.

Smell: A very crisp aroma with a nice scent of lively hops. Sweet pale malts and wheat grains with big hints of biscuit, crackers, hay, cereal, dough, and yeast. Bright scent of citrus lemons and oranges. A fairly big mix of hops with some earthy grassy hops, spicy resin, and the citrus. The grains and malts still stand out the most as expected, but this is pretty hopped up for a Pilsner. Pretty good aroma.

Taste: A solid bready pilsner taste, with a big kick of hops to back it up. Starts with a sweet taste of wheat grains and bready malts. Notes of yeast, biscuit, crackers, hay, and bready dough. Midway comes a nice and sharp kick of hops. Citrus hops with some orange and lemon zest. Floral and earthy European hops. Has a nice spicy finish from some resinous hops. Has the solid bready taste you expect from a Pilsner with a interesting amped up hop presence.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp and very smooth. A nice spicy twang lingers on the tongue.

Overall: An interesting and tasty take on a pilsner. The hops add a nice bitter and spicy kick to the already solid malts.

Photo of LXIXME
3.43/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big white head settles into a nice long lasting lacing above a clear bright and shiny golden colored beer.

Aroma is kind of light and consisting of floral, pine, and light grassy hops.

A light bitter bite in a light floral, pine, and grassy hops taste.

A light dry aftertaste that holds a light hops with it on this light bodied pils.

This beer has a nice light taste, if you are into big pilsner taste this beer is not for you, I would consider this more of a gateway to pilsners beer.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A crisp clear looking beer that is yellow and bubbly. The head is white and large but fades quickly to some simple suds.

The smell is of fresh malts with hints of a grassy earthiness. Simple clean and almost understated, I'm not entirely sure what makes this anything more then a pilsner.

Taste like the nose and look is clean crisp and satisfying. The lightly toasted grains are sweet and pie toy balanced with a light hop spice. Simple and perfect just like a German pils should be.

Mouthfeel has a great sharp carbonation that nicely balances the sweetness of the malts. This is a tasty brew but not much of an imperial. Very worth checking out if your a fan of a good drinking pils.

Photo of CloudStrife
3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled June 16th 2012.

A: Rigorous pour gives this clear bodied light gold beer a full 2 finger head. Some visible carbonation, head sticks around for a few minutes and leaves some lace as it dissipates.

S: More hop than I anticipated, a bready musty malt. Hints of spice and pine from the hops.

T: Very well balanced mix of hops and malt. A little more hoppy than most, but not complaints here. Not sure how much more you could ask from a pilsner.

M: Light bodied with a clean and crisp finish. Very drinkable.

Overall a great surprise from the Beer Camp mix pack. Would love for them to make this a full time brew.

Photo of rdilauro
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I havent had a pour of a pilsner color in quick some time. It looked so refreshing. Something about the crystal clarify of this beer that look inviting, the same way I feel when I pour a crisp New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.

It had a slight bouquet of what I enjoy about European Pilsner beers.

The taste was light , dry and crisp. very crisp and perhaps the mouthful was a bit on the light side.

Finished nicely.

Photo of lnashsig
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

#BOTG 112! a new one to Houston, SN Beer Camp. One of my favorite releases of the year, looking forward to this one.

Poured from bottle into NB Tulip glass. Pours a crytal clear golden color. Thick white head (about 1/2 a finger) sits on top of a billowing carbonation stream coming up from the bottom of the glass. Great looking beer. Smell- clean grainy pils aroma, some hoppy dank aroma. Overall, just a very clean aroma. Taste- up front some nice buttery and sweet malt flavors. This definitely has a nice malt backbone. Grassy hops, some citrus flavors play later on the finish, maybe a hint of orange peel. Nice dry, crisp finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied. This is a super easy drinking and big pils that I could easily pound back on a summer day. Nicely done, I would drink it often and yr round if it was available.

Photo of mdaschaf
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice golden color with a soapy white head on top decent retention with some pretty nice lacing.

S: Some earthy/mineral aromas, light grassy hops, and some biscuity malt.

T: Pretty tasty, a nice amount of hops in this one. Very grassy and floral and some light apple/pear going on. Pale malt mixes in nicely.

M: Light to medium bodied, very crisp and easy drinking. Moderate carbonation.

O: Surprised it was only 5.6% for an "Imperial" Pils, but it doesn't really bother me at all.

Photo of GilGarp
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served cold in a pint glass.

Imperial Pilsner is a pale golden yellow color with great clarity and fizzy sticky head.

Aroma is nice and hoppy with a hit of lemon and spice.

Flavor is punchy and bitter. It has a great deal of hoppiness without being overpowered. Light malt base lets the spicy German hops shine.

Mouthfeel is light in body and nicely carbonated.

Overall a good pils but, as others have mentioned, too light in ABV and flavor to be called imperial.

Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rising carbonation bubbles in a medium yellow body, with soapy head. Good dirty Blonde yeasty aroma.Citrus taste, good Ibu, smooth, dry finish. I liked it as only a minority of saaz/mineraly element (in fact, Magnum, Crystal and Pacifica hops) and despite fresh assertive carbonation,

Photo of tdm168
3.61/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - bright yellow with some carbonation rising to the top and a thick, dense, white head with great retention

S - grainy, spicy, herbal

T - grainy, spicy, herbal, a bit grassy, a hint of lemon

M - medium bodied, warm, smooth, well carbonated

This is a decent, easy to drink beer. The hop character keeps things interesting though it's a bit spicier than most Pilsners. It's also a bit grainy but nonetheless, it's definitely worth a try.

Photo of secondtooth
4.23/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clean golden yellow, with a huge head of white bubbles. Beautiful, intricate, and ornate lace!

Aroma is crisp, grainy, and yeasty. A tinge of citrus and floral hops comes in, as well, making this one very appealing, indeed.

Taste shows the malts and grains appearing up front, followed by a hoppy bitterness at the back of the tongue. Still, this is a fittingly mild and easy-to-drink pilsner with tons of flavor. Absolutely superb!

Photo of prototypic
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Imperial Pilsner pours a light straw color. It’s crystal clear. When held to light, it certainly looks like a brighter yellow color. The head is rather impressive. It’s bone white and stands nearly two fingers tall. Retention is pretty good. Took a while to completely dissipate and held at the surface for a long time. Lacing was a rather light.

The nose is rather light and uninspired. Are we sure this is an “imperial” anything? It does have earthy and grainy notes that linger throughout. That’s the most prominent scent. Hops are there and add a light fruity scent and quite a bit of grass. Definitely seems like noble hops to me. No big surprise there. Alcohol is pretty well buried. I’m not getting any. Given its modest abv, that’s about right. Eh. It’s okay. Average sounds about right.

The flavor is quite a bit better. It’s surprisingly satisfying. The malt base is most certainly pilsner, and it is quite flavorful. It has a nice, light sweet flavor that anchors things down nicely. It is very grainy and earthy throughout. The hop bill seems to consist of noble varieties. It’s very grassy and mildly bitter. There’s a light, citrus lemon flavor that’s nice. Perhaps it’s attributable to hops. There’s a light spicy flavor that’s really the x-factor. It works very well with the malt base and the hops. Alcohol is definitely buried. I’m not getting anything. Finishes spicy, grassy, and a bit malty.

Imperial Pilsner has a medium body. Carbonation seems nice and crisp, but it feels soft and smooth. I like that a lot. It definitely goes down easy. Given its size, it’d be easy to tackle a few bottles of this in a sitting.

Sierra Nevada did a nice job with Imperial Pilsner. It’s good stuff. I have no idea why it carries the “imperial” tag, but it’s still good beer. I guess that’s my biggest complaint. It’s not an “imperial” anything. Just call it what it is…a German Pilsner. Nevertheless, it’s good beer…whatever you want to call it.

Photo of MrKennedy
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle thanks to mulder1010, into a Brooklyn tulip.

Light golden colour, really compact white bubbles on top that lace as it falls gradually froma height of a couple of fingers. A little bit of haze, but otherwise good clarity. Very nice looking beer.

Smells sweet, a little herbal hop presence, very clean and clear. Some grass as well. Nice and well defined.

Taste follows on from the smell, herbal hop flavour and some sweet malt backing it. Enough there and not over the top. Seems typical for Sierra Nevada, good beer done well.

Not a huge body, nor should it at 5.6% ABV. Seems to suit the flavour profile pretty well. Hop bitterness is decent early and it gets sweet at the end but avoids becoming cloying.

Nice fun beer to drink. Just like every other Sierra Nevada beer i've had, it has no real faults, very good all round and worth getting. One of the better Imperial Pilsners i've stumbled upon.

Photo of russpowell
4.72/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours an effervescent gold with 3 fingers of ivory colored head. Great lacing & average head retention

S: Grassy & bready notes,

T: Grapefruity notes mix with crackery notes, lemons, some sweet bready notes up front, plus a touch of dryness. Herbal hops mix with citrus, along with dryness. Crisp, dry finish

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation, good balance

This is a great German Pils, the star of the variety pack IMO

Photo of hdofu
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm not usually a pilsner fan, but this one is one of the better pilsners I've encountered, not enough to make me want more but hey it was easy to drink and I wouldn't turn it down. It had the amound of head you'd expect with a pillsner. It was pale/goldenish. It smelled medicinal and had other spices in the nose. These were very noticeable when drinking the beer. If you like pilsners with flavor, this one has more flavor then most which is a good thing to me.

Photo of wspscott
3.86/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle in Sam Adams glass

A: Straw color and crystal clear, topped with a pure white creamy head, almost sparkles when held up to the window, I love the way a pils looks.
S: Floral and sweet like honey with an underlying resinous quality
T: Aggressive bitterness that quickly fades to sweet pils malt with a lingering sense of hops. There are definitely a lot of hops here, but I wish there was more flavor of hops vs. mostly bitterness.
M: Very crisp, high level of carbonation
O: An excellent pils, very well made and incredibly easy to drink. I'm not sure what makes this "imperial" given the 5.6% alcohol level, but I am not complaining. Probably the best beer in the Beer Camp 12 pack, but that may say more about me than the beer :) Worth trying.

Photo of Gmann
3.48/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden straw color, slight haze, with a pure white head that left some nice soapy lacing on the pils glass.

The aroma is weak, some grassy hops with a nice peppery spice. Perhaps a touch of honey from the malt.

The taste is bright. A crackery malt with a hint of honey. There seems to be a slight lemony note which is a bit odd for a pils. The hop flavor is light and grassy with some pepper notes. Could be a notch stronger.

Moderate feel with crisp carbonation. A bit sweet for the style and doesn't finish as clean as it should, some lingering sweetness. Needs a bit more hoppy bitterness. Drinks very well though.

I am a little torn on this one. As a true pils, it misses some marks. However it has a wonderful bright flavor to it and is quite drinkable.

Photo of morimech
3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear, pale golden color with two fingers of head that had good retention before settling to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left down the glass. Nothing really interesting about the aroma. Just a good standard German pilsener smell, grainy with spicy, grassy hops. Expected a little something extra being a limited release and imperial. The flavor is more interesting. Dry malt that I like in my pale lagers. The hops are different and are more prominent. These are fruity along with the more common spicy hops. It somehow works. A little bigger body than most common pilsneners. Superbly carbonated. Not really surprised by the mouthfeel from this brewer. Expected a little bigger beer for an imperial but this is a real solid beer with a bit of a different twist.

Photo of KTCamm
3.41/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours clear golden, translucent, somewhat hazy. Leaves some foam on the top. Ring around the side. Pilsy smell. Taste is light pils, but with a firmer more present hop. Able to maintain the lightness while giving and end kick. Pretty good. Nice twist on a pils style.

Photo of mscudder
3.15/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint.

A - A crisp and clear gold with a fluffy pale head. I know it is a pilsener but I cannot help but identify the look as a bud light with a fine head. Above average retention.

S - Lemon, grass, wheat, some hops and some bready malts.

T - Starts with big dry hops. Not personally a fan of such a composition, however it does it well. Really weak to be considered "imperial."

M - Light to medium body with a fairly large malt backbone for the style. Carbonation is low for what I anticipated.

O - A pilsener that I really cannot get behind. Granted few have my stamp of personal approval this one is one that will be forgotten in a matter of days.

Photo of jtierney89
2.5/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Clear crisp gold color with bright white head. Skunky earthy hops on the nose, some cereal grain. Big full carbonated mouthfeel. Sweet pale malted grain on the tip of the tongue rolls through to the hop profile which tries to balance things out but grainy buttery sweetness lingers.

The only thing imperial about this is the malt body, other than that hops are standard and abv is even a bit detectable at the measly 5 something abv.

Alright, but not worthy of the name or a second try.

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Sticke Pilsner - Beer Camp #43 (Best Of Beer Camp: Imperial Pilsner) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 432 ratings.