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Old Chico Crystal Wheat - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Chico Crystal WheatOld Chico Crystal Wheat

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

48 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 200
rAvg: 3.55
pDev: 10.42%
Wants: 11
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: flexabull on 04-03-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 200
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to drewone for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, wheat, grains, and some slight hop aromas. Taste is much the same with a mild bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is light and easy to drink. (493 characters)

Photo of largadeer
3.76/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Effervescent pale gold. Extremely clear as expected, with a nice creamy head that retains well and leaves plenty of lacing.

Smell: Very wheaty and bready. A little lemon fruitiness and light phenols, though it's a pretty clean and malty nose overall.

Taste & mouthfeel: Again, bready malts are dominant on the tongue, backed by a light citrusy fruit profile and a touch of peppery spiciness. Bitterness is reserved, offering a modest kick to the finish. Nice creamy mouthfeel, especially given the low ABV. Not a particularly sweet beer, nor overly dry. There's a metallic note to the finish that puts me off a little bit, but otherwise this is pretty nice stuff. (677 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.67/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A hoppy and light-bodied beer. Dry and biscuity wheat malt taste. Nice nose of hops with a lingering but restrained bitterness. Just a touch of flowers. It is fairly sharp on the tongue, starts out well carbonated, but flattens out fairly rapidly. Looks nice in the glass with the light amber color.

Certainly one of the better entries in this often anemic category. Flavorful and a good choice for a lighter alcohol version. (426 characters)

Photo of tdm168
3.21/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a pale yellow with little head, carbonation is evident. Very little in the nose; mild straw and hint of yeast. Taste is much the same; wheat and yeast. Mouthfeel is incredibly light and dry. This beer lacks strong flavor and backbone, but if your looking for a sessionable beer this fits the bill. (342 characters)

Photo of Billolick
3.62/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle without freshness info.

Pours very clear, light straw/golden in color. The head is off white and tightly knit. Leaves just some very fine and minor lace on the glass.

"only available locally" hmmm, good thing I wa in California and got to sample some of this.

Peppery with grainy hops, light and easy drinking. Decent summer sessioner and glad I gave it a try, but not close to being anything special. (420 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
4.09/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle, into a wheat ale glass.

Deep light bronze body color, crystal clear, with a perfect amount of rising not too fine, not too big sized bubble carbonation. Head is fluffy white, with a big soapy cap, light smooth top, and big island retention of four fingers. Great looking brew.

Really fascinating aroma, hinting more hop forward. Hints of floral and big herbal spicy quality it seems, with a real nice sweet dry clove. Very inviting aroma, but hints almost towards czech style pilsner. When rested sweet malty aromas come out more like a pils than wheat. Doughy and crisp sweetness with a big hint of tangy quality. Smells really delicious.

Palate seems to take itself down a notch. The herbality hints more towards American on the hop angle, flushing out an almost creamy herbality and indistinct fruit and tropical zest. Very clean finish, almost lager like with a good but not great mouthfeel. Crisp body and accentuating the hop quality nicely. Not much sense of chewy wheat density to this.

Overall a real fascinating beer, quite neat and enjoyable. (1,092 characters)

Photo of Zorro
3.06/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear golden colored ale with a medium sized white head.

Smells of wheat cracker and lemon with a slight citrus funk. Truthfully the scent is very light.

Starts out light and mildly sweet with a wheat cracker flavor. Slight vanilla and caramel flavors. This is lightly flavored and fizzy, pretty much a lawnmower beer.

Mouthfeel is light.

Overall this is OK and a good choice for treating thirst. This is just a light wheat ale. (432 characters)

Photo of Haybeerman
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear, pale yellow/straw color. Poured a 2 finger foamy white head with fair retention to an even skim. Laced in thick rings.

S: Wheat malt, citrus, bubblegum and a little yeast fruitiness.

T: Crackery with light yeast fruitiness. Light and active on the palate. Finishes dry and crisp with a little citrus zest.

M: Light body. Ample carbonation; active in the glass and on the palate. Smooth, crisp and refreshing.

O: Very sessionable. Smooth and refreshing. Light malt and yeast character. (498 characters)

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.15/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a weizen glass.
4.8% ABV

A - Crystal clear, there's no false advertising in the beer's name! This golden brew has a plush white head that covers the glass in clumpy Swiss cheese-looking lacing for a beautiful appearance.

S - Bright and vibrant, Old Chico has an exuberant wheat aroma that capitalizes on the simplicity of the beer, transporting me to a field of wheat gently swaying in the summer breeze.

T - Grainy pale malt comprises a base that's reminiscent of milling grain before brewing and is wonderfully overcome by gentle wheat, which finishes out with a crisp cleanliness.

M - Light bodied, crisp with sparkling carbonation, and refreshing, Old Chico is a beer that demands to be downed on a hot summer day.

O - Sierra Nevada's Old Chico is a crisp and refreshing wheat beer that offers delicious simplicity with crisp and refreshing drinkability. If this beer was distributed here it would be at the top of my summer lawnmower beers list! (980 characters)

Photo of williamjbauer
2.98/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A light golden-amber color
S Medium wheat scent with light pine overall very light scent
T First strong wheat flavor with citrus tones afterward
M Pretty smooth mouthfeel

Overall - best drank on a hot summer day, an average wheat beer, I'd drink it if it was on sale or a gift :) (281 characters)

Photo of ArrogantB
3.06/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big thanks to LivMtdew420 for this local that I had never heard of. Bright yellow, transparent and looks like a light beer. Smells yeasty, not bad. Flavor is wheat and yeast but so darn light. I could pound these at a barbecue but at the same time I'd rather just have two pale ales. I was still quite glad to try this beer. (324 characters)

Photo of illidurit
2.73/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Typical transparent gold with a mediocre white head. Musty rotting bananas and cereal on the nose. Not exactly an intoxicating bouquet. Flavor is a subtle blend of tart fermented wheat, barely-there citrus hops, banana peels, and sticky grains. I’m not sure why I punished myself by buying what is obviously a lame-ass beer (another coveted wheat ale tick!) but what’s done is done. I emerge from this experience unsatisfied. (471 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
3.96/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into DFH shaped pint glass.

A: Pours a clear deep golden yellow with a couple fingers of bright white head that slowly faded into a thick film that left thin streaks of lacing down the glass.
S: Dominant notes of crackery wheat and clean grains with lighter notes of spicy hops.
T: Big wheat flavor that is light and clean with a touch lemon and earthy spice in the finish. Aftertaste is minerally but refreshing.
M: Light body with a really crisp, lightly dry and refreshing mouthfeel. Carbonation is lively but nice.
O: A really great, clean and refreshing drinking beer, and one of the better examples of the style. (632 characters)

Photo of alexgash
3.7/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle.

Pours a brilliant, clear, golden yellow. Two fingers of whipped, thick, bright white head. Good lacing too. Clean nose of fresh barley, wheat bread, light honey, peppery spices, and a little citrus zest.

Toasted bread malts and slightly skunky, herbal hop bitterness up front. Grainy malts fill in, with light notes of apple and honey. Moderate bitterness follows, with grassy, peppery flavors. Some lingering toasted grains in the finish. Dry and crisp in the end, which makes this pretty easy to quaff on a nice summer day. Moderate body, with a lively feel. Not bad, but I'll reach for the Kellerweis before this one! (637 characters)

Photo of Fatehunter
3.27/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass. Half finger of head, golden transparent color.

A metallic smell with a mild orange.

Soapy taste, orange, banana and lemon.

Crisp and clean body, moderate carbonation.

A good enough beer, maybe for throwing back a couple on a summer day. (266 characters)

Photo of harrymel
3.29/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled around 01DEC11

A: pours a brilliant straw ale with a finger of fine, white foam. This falls to a sheet of the same leaving soapy lace.
S: Wheat, grain, dust, some earthy crispness. It seems to have a decent pilsner tone with subdued earthen hops.
T: Some sweet cereal flavors with a bit of crispy pizzazz that provides a slight peppery flavor. I can dig.
M: thin with hi carb and a dry finish.
O: Really a drinkable beer. I wouldn't got too far outta my way to drink it, but if it were 100F outside, I'd be happy to split a pitcher. (543 characters)

Photo of Tucquan
3.61/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this on 2014-06-22 in Reno, NV from a 12 oz.

Tasty, light American Wheat. Very good mouthfeel. No clove or banana. Plenty of grain. Touch of lemon. Refreshing and smooth. Very little bitterness. (201 characters)

Photo of flexabull
3.43/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Limited release NorCal only beer. For awhile, this was Chico only, now it's getting a little bigger distribution.

Pours a bright and clear gold color with a small white head.

Aromas are dusty and floral, with some wheat grain.

Taste is really crisp and clean. Light cream malt sweetness, soft wheat grains, and faint lemon citrus hops on the finish.

Mouthfeel is good, smooth and full, with nice carbonation.

Overall, a decent beer. It's definitely a "gateway" type of beer that seems to be designed to appeal to the non beer geeks. But it has it's redeeming qualities, it's refreshing, and easy drinking, but it's really simple. (634 characters)

Photo of ngeunit1
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden-yellow color with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down fairly quickly leaving behind some light lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of wheat with some orange zest and other citrus flavors, with some light grassy and floral hops.

T - Starts off some wheat with some lemon and orange peel and bit of citrus hop. Through the middle, some grassy and floral hops come through with a touch of bitterness. The finish is a mix of wheat, lightly sweet malts, with some floral and citrus hops.

M - Medium-light bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a sweet and dry finish.

D - Very drinkable. Feels smooth and very crisp. A good session ale with enough flavor and balance to stay interesting. (728 characters)

Photo of armock
3.83/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Safeway in Manteca, CA.

A - Poured a golden color with a white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Has a light nose with some wheat and mild hops

T - Like the smell this is a mild beer with wheat upfront with mild hops and a hint of lemon in the finish

M - This beer has a light body with higher carbonation to it

O - This is a very enjoyable beer thats light and refreshing this will beer a good beer to have on hand this summer for BBQs worth getting sometime to try (484 characters)

Photo of HalfFull
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a clear blonde with a nice half inch cap of foam.

Nose of wheat and some citric/lemony hops. An intriguing blend of American and German hop character is evident.

Taste is solid and offers a nice lingering finish. Unique for the sttyle with some background spice characteristics.

Feel is solid with a good carbonation, quite lingering on the finish. (399 characters)

Photo of Chico1985
3.59/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had to pick up a 6-pack of this while in California for namesake purposes, and always nice to try new/locally unavailable Sierra Nevada of course.

Appearance - Pale yellow body with a puffy cloud of white head. Retention: thick ring, lace: not much.

Smell - Actually some decent (albeit tame) hop presence - I get lemon, grapefruit, and some grassy resin. Cereal/wheat/grain as well, along with just a slight meh/adjunct feel to it.

Taste - Lemon, wheat and grainy flavors all around with some light grassy and spicy hop. Finishes with some cereal and baked bread. Some papery flavors here and there but mostly ignorable.

Mouthfeel - Crisp and light with pleasant extra-foamy carbonation.

Overall - Pretty straightforward American wheat ale, not too much for off-flavors, clean, drinkable and enjoyable. Not the first 6-pack I'd think to reach for but better than most for the style in my opinion. (904 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.3/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden straw, with a finger width head, dissipates quickly, and leaves behind a fair, sticky lace.

Smell - Primarily wheat, some sweet malt, and a bit of hoppiness. All very basic.

Taste - A little on the hoppy side, but plenty of wheat maltiness shines through. Very plain. Not much outside of a basic wheat, hop, and yeast profile.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body. Decent carbonation.

Overall - A fairly bland, lifeless wheat beer. Drinkable, but nothing outstanding. (503 characters)

Photo of vkv822
3.23/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

12oz : tulip
bottled May 2nd, 2013

Pours a brilliantly clear, golden with a thick, foamy white head.

Aroma, while pleasant, is quite subdued, with just some faint floral hops and grainy, malty, wheat notes. The taste follows through with pretty much the same profile.

Medium-full body with foamy carbonation.

The taste was not unpleasant, but it was quite subdued, which is what led me to score it as I did. (411 characters)

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.97/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle tried 9 Jan 2012. Served in the Saint Arnold wheat glass.

Large light yellowish head. Well carbonated. Clear bright yellow in color. Aroma is light, wheat, mineral, slightly fruity tart. Relatively light in flavor as well. Some mineral and lemon to start. Medium body. Light ethanol. A pithy bitterness in the finish and aftertaste.

Well balanced. Easy to drink. (379 characters)

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Old Chico Crystal Wheat from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.