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Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale - SweetWater Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale AleSweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

2,133 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,133
Reviews: 621
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 13.15%
Wants: 56
Gots: 177 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
SweetWater Brewing Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-29-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,133 | Reviews: 621 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of despainmakesbeer
despainmakesbeer

Kentucky

3.15/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Moderate hop aroma, little to no malt aroma. Pleasant floral aroma. Nice golden color, nice clear appearance. Thin, white lace around edge of glass. Mild carbonation. Balanced hop flavor, no malt flavor. Smooth, low dry finish, slightly sweet mouthfeel. Very drinkable beer, well balanced, but very tame for an extra ipa.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2010 22:11:40 | More by despainmakesbeer
Photo of gmfessen
gmfessen

Michigan

3.23/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Loved Sweetwater's IPA so I'm hoping this one will be just as good. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a clear golden sunrise color with a crackling, soapy white head. The nose is rather unremarkable but this may not be the beer's fault, it does have a best by date of 4-19-10 and its September now. Pale malts, a touch of fruitiness and just a hint of lightly toasted malt are all present. Tastes like it smells, rather unremarkable. The aforementioned smells are accurately translated into corresponding flavors with some hop bitterness for balance but not much flavor (again this is probably not the beer's fault). Mouthfeel is a full-medium bodied beer with a creamy carbonation and a semi-dry finish. Overall, a decently drinkable beer but not impressive. I would like to try this one again within its freshness range. If it is anything like their IPA I'm sure it's great.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2010 20:18:30 | More by gmfessen
Photo of GJ40
GJ40

North Carolina

3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 12oz bottle in a standard pint glass. Best by date is 10/18/10.

A - A light but vibrant golden color with great clarity and a fluffy white head. Very attractive and inviting.

S - Mild piney hops that fade quickly with some fruity esters.

T - Clean and slightly crisp with a mild sweetness. The bitterness is low but it lingers a bit. The flavors seem a little disconnected but it's good enough.

M - Smooth and silky with a nice low carbonation.

D - Not outstanding but enjoyable and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2010 22:17:50 | More by GJ40
Photo of Baraka
Baraka

Missouri

3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(reviewed from notes)

Very citrusy hop flavors abound in this beer. It seems rather hoppy and unbalanced for an APA (I suppose this is the "extra" in the title). It has a certain sweetness to it that meshes really well with the hop character but doesn't really temper the hop flavors with a malty balance. Certainly an interesting take on the APA as well as a very crisp and sessionable beer. Certainly worth trying if you find yourself in the southern states that Sweetwater distributes to.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2010 21:08:15 | More by Baraka
Photo of Squelch
Squelch

United Kingdom (England)

3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: tan with no head. Mostly clear.

Aroma: I don't pick up anything here.

Taste: smooth perfectly balanced pale ale. Will hav e again.

Mouthfeel: light bodied. No astringency. Nice beer

Drinkability: wonderful beer for summertime sipping.

Serving type: on-tap

08-03-2010 21:30:05 | More by Squelch
Photo of charlesbyrd
charlesbyrd

Mississippi

3.73/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on draft at, well, just about every restaurant I visited in Savannah, GA. Served in a pint glass.

A: Pours an almost clear straw yellow. About a finger of biscuity off-white head. The head dissipates fairly quickly and leaves a fair amount of lacing on the glass.

S: A very straightforward pale ale aroma. Up front I got several distinct hop aromas ranging from floral to citric. There is also a faint bready backbone.

T: The palate is overwhelmed with a grassy crispness, followed by citric peel bitterness which is just balanced by the malt. A very refreshing, if short-lived, flavor.

M: Light and crisp on the palate with just the right amount of bubble. It's extremely dry, and thus the flavor doesn't stay around for very long. It has an almost puckering effect.

D: This was the perfect companion for exploring the Savannah Historic District during July. Whenever you fell parched, you can walk into pretty much any bar and pick up a pint to go. It doesn't have quite as much character as SNPA to me, but it's still very good.

Serving type: on-tap

07-26-2010 17:20:42 | More by charlesbyrd
Photo of Gouxman
Gouxman

Kentucky

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This West Coast style APA has a great hop flavor and aroma. I've heard a lot about this beer before I tried it, so there was some hype surrounding it.

I thoroughly enjoyed the citrus hop flavors that were nicely balanced by a bready malt base. The carbonation was spot on, leaving a nice subtle lace inside my cup. The bitterness did not linger on the palate for too long and left me thirsty for more.

A great example of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2010 03:14:12 | More by Gouxman
Photo of AgentMunky
AgentMunky

California

3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: A pale, clear honey colour with lots of bubbles and nice-looking head. Significant lacing.

S: Faint hops and vague grain. Not much going on here.

T: Mild citrus is the best flavour in the beer, the others being soapy hops and a beery background taste. Otherwise, 420 is light in body and smooth drinking. Aftertaste is mild.

M: Tart and biting carbonation pleases the tongue, but there is a less pleasant clinging bitterness.

D: Very easy drinking! A bit hoppy for some, mayhap, but good overall.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2010 01:35:18 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of jadpsu
jadpsu

Georgia

3.35/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a good foamy head with good retention and sticky lace.
Citrus, mosthly lemon peel aroma. More hoppy than malty but enough malts to provide good balance.
Malts surface in the mouthfeel with some toastiness evident.
The citrus characteristics make this a good hot weahter selection APA.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2010 02:07:22 | More by jadpsu
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, golden/orange color with a good deal of carbonation. It had a two-finger, off-white head of big bubbles. It left some nice rings of lace.

S - It smelled of pine, citrus and burnt toast malt.

T - This is a good APA with piney/resiny hop bitterness, a touch of orange peel and sweet burnt toast maltiness.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale that finished very dry.

D - This is a good beer. I'm glad I finally found a 420 Extra Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2010 23:24:51 | More by zeff80
Photo of mjw06
mjw06

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Excellent clarity with a golden rose color and small medium lasting head, descent lace as well.

The smell was of a beautiful sweet pollinated rose.

The taste was superiorly well-balanced, with all the flavors you should expect and want in in an pale ale. Floral hop with a sweet malt, not much residual, that entered at the center of the tongue.

Really enjoyed this beer, quite possible will become my pale ale of choice when travelling in the South, where it seems to be widely available.

Serving type: on-tap

07-14-2010 23:14:10 | More by mjw06
Photo of GeezLynn
GeezLynn

Minnesota

3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Best if enjoyed by 08/17/10"

A: Dark honey color with a thick white head that is very well-retained. Definitely passes the "look test".

S: Bready pale malt, with some hints of sweetness. Hops seem absent at first, but show up with a little time out of the bottle. Nothing too bright or spectacular however.

T: Flavor is fairly sweet and fruity (esp. orange) for a pale ale. Not all that bready and less bitterness than many APAs. Malt is light but shows a little more as the beer warms. Relatively soft flavor, but not a dull softness.

M: Light and surprisingly under-carbonated despite the impressive head. Some snappy carbonation might compensate for the low bitterness.

This really just a different kind of APA than most out there. With the fruit flavors, it's almost like a toned-down version of Sweetwater's IPA. I like my Pales a little more bready and bitter, but this isn't a bad beer by any stretch. Light, but interesting enough to have a couple.

420's the flagship and pretty representative of Sweetwater's approach to their market.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2010 01:49:51 | More by GeezLynn
Photo of Ryan011235
Ryan011235

Ohio

3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass on 7/11/10

Best by 8/23/10

Thanks to scottyshades for the bottle

Faded amber color; held to the light it looks pale gold. Poured one & a half fingers of foam that thins to a skim after a few minutes, leaving sporadic lace. Thin retention with marginal lace.

The aroma exhibits all sorts of grassiness; light & airy. Notes of citric hops - orange juice & lemon - never quite push to the front. Toasted grains & a notable breadiness round it out.

Similar to the nose, there grass & grains are immediately apparent. Lemon zest & orange peel hoppiness peppers the beer throughout. Toasted malt backdrop. Balance seems to be key with this one; nothing really jumps out of the pack, especially after the beer warms a little. Very chill.

The feel is pretty standard; medium body, moderate carbonation (maybe a hair on the low side) & a shot, rather clean finish. Just a spritz of zest & grass linger briefly.

Sweetwater seems to have brewed 420 with safety in mind. Safety in that the average person could easily handle the beer without being overwhelmed; nothing wrong with that, of course. Not bad, but 420 hasn't swayed me from their excellent IPA.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2010 01:33:30 | More by Ryan011235
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

2.28/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. A generous extra from jophish17. Thanks Joe!

I've heard great things about this pale ale. I'm not exactly an APA connoisseur, but I enjoy drinking them on the days when I don't feel like downing a bomber of 13% imperial stout by myself (which is most days). Best by date is 09/05/10, so I expect it to be pretty fresh.

A: Pours a clear, straw-amber body with a finger of short-lived head. Retention is short, leaving a thin collar and no lace.

S: Not particularly pungent, even after it warms and opens up. Citrus zest and bread are noticeable, but so is white corn (like maize). It's strange.

T: A little simple tasting; dominated mostly by a general pale malt flavor, some bread, and very light citrus zest (grapefruit). Maize on the exhalation. I gathered from the bottle that this was West Coast-inspired, but it's definitely not as hoppy as the label suggests. Nor is it particularly malty. It's just sort of a toned-down, inoffensive flavor.

M: Light-bodied, with medium carbonation. A bit low for the style. I expected it to be crisper.

D: Kind of a letdown, but maybe those were my expectations at work. I thought it would be a really solid pale ale like Terrapin's Rye PA, but this seems like a lager targeted toward the macro crowd. Skip.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2010 22:35:52 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of scottyshades
scottyshades

Florida

4.13/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

My first 420 experience on-tap, along with SW IPA on-tap

A: Pours a transparent pale copper color with a big fluffy/soapy head. Retention is surprisingly excellent.

S: The nose is really subtle and light, but if you dig a little bit it's there, and pretty nice. Floral hops greet you at first, then transitions into a malty/bready/biscuity dominant aspect. Light citrus from the hops, as well as some underlying sweetness and honey. Alcohol is faintly noticeable.

T: Wow, much better than the nose, and different from the bottled version as I remember. The hops give some delicate floral notes, a sturdy bitterness, and slight pineapple, grapefruit, peach, and orange. LOTS of honey in the end palate, and the way that it adds to the sweetness, and at the same time, balances the bitterness is awesome.

MF/D: Carbonation is pretty much what one would expect it to be; a little bit fizzly, but smooth enough. Lingering honey finish on it, and the alcohol is slightly noticeable. This is a dry finish. Very drinkable, especially at $6 a pitcher...

Notes: I slightly prefer this on-tap, but otherwise pretty even. I personally think that this beer deserves better numbers.

Serving type: on-tap

07-07-2010 22:46:19 | More by scottyshades
Photo of jsprain1
jsprain1

Minnesota

3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- clear amber, with a nice head and good lacing.
S- The smell is a refreshing citrus hop smell. a bit of pale malts as well.
T- Pretty sweet throughout, with the sweetness playing off of the slight bitterness of the citrus and pineapple flavored hops.
M- Notably thin.
D- Overall this a good pale ale. Positive recommendation.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2010 06:49:47 | More by jsprain1
Photo of erosier
erosier

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a nice amber color with a medium sized and medium bodied white colored head that laces the glass a bit as it fades down the glass.
S: Smells of sweet roasted and toasted malts, hints of citrus, then a nice big citrus-y, earthy, somewhat sweet hop aroma.
T: Tastes of sweet roasted and toasted malts, a nice mix of lemon, orange, grapefruit citrus flavors, finishing up with a nice earthy and citrus-y hop flavor.
M: Very crisp, fresh, refreshing, light to medium bodied, perfect amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable beer, all the flavors blend well and make for a great summer sipping beer.

Serving type: on-tap

07-01-2010 11:03:33 | More by erosier
Photo of rarbring
rarbring

Sweden

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear dark amber beverage, an off-white head leaving lacing.

Citric aromas, grapefruit, somewhat piny and a bitter tang.

The taste is faintly sweet of biscuits, then we have the lemon and grape-juice. Finishing of being dominated by bitter hop oils.

Medium high carbonation, soft and creamy, a dry finish.

A nice beer, with a good long bitterness.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2010 20:35:47 | More by rarbring
Photo of RomaniIteDomum
RomaniIteDomum

Florida

3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice head. Good amber color with killer retention and lacing.

Nice, yet gentle, hoppy smell.

Good sweetness up front with a pleasant hoppy finish.

Light, bordering watery, but pretty good.

Super easy drinking. This is a quality session beer. I just hope Tampa gets distrobution soon. I don't like having to drive.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2010 21:23:29 | More by RomaniIteDomum
Photo of boss302
boss302

Florida

4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sweetwater 420, draft
A4,S4.5,T4,M3.5,O4

A Amber. Darker than a pilsner, but lighter than red ale.  Had a nice head, but didn't last long. 

S Very prominant hop aroma.  Flowery sweet.  Some malty notes as well. Very clean!  Take your sniffs while there is still some head.  

T Crisp, hops up front, hops dominate but are not overwhelming. Those that like hops will love it and those that don't should broden their horizons, because they are missing a really good beer.  You can taste the malt, but it is hidden behind the hops. 

M Medium body, no warming on the aftertaste. 

O A very good beer. Recommended for the pale ale lover.   

Serving type: on-tap

05-22-2010 22:25:53 | More by boss302
Photo of tchenery
tchenery

Virginia

4.28/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured bottle to glass.

Beer color is a nice yellowish-orange, very clear, very inviting. Has a nice head that dissipates to a thin layer and stays.

It smells slightly floral, fruity, and earthy. The fruits would be light/white fruits, maybe pear. The beer tastes great. It has a very straightforward bitter front that finishes nicely with a fruitlike hop finish. It has a pretty dry finish.

Very drinkable beer. We used to drink this stuff in college all the time. Go Dawgs! And it's nice to try it again. I'll have no trouble finishing this 6-pack and will stock up next time I head to the deep South.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2010 21:50:00 | More by tchenery
Photo of aepb1
aepb1

Florida

3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- Light, golden color with a small white head

S- Very hoppy and a bit earthy in there too

T- Light sweet malt with a slight piney hop finish that's dry and crisp

M- Light mouthfeel that's quite mild

D- Smooth and easy to drink

It's a decent pale ale but nothing surprising here but a nice drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2010 17:16:31 | More by aepb1
Photo of abrand
abrand

Illinois

3.4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle out of the tackle box sampler brought back from FL by my mother. Poured into a pint glass.

The 420 pale ale pours an orange color with good clarity and a nice pillowy white head and some retention. A nice malt backbone to the nose with very subtle hop characteristics. Citrus fruits are faint, but present. Taste is water downed and some hints of malts and pines. Smell is much more dominating than the quaff. Mouthfeel is watery and thin. Not the best pale ale out there. Not much complexity or taste to it.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2010 02:46:58 | More by abrand
Photo of generalnotsew
generalnotsew

Tennessee

2.78/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Didn't get much of a head. Very thin lacing. But it does have a nice copper coloring.

S: Very weird smell. I am getting week old milk and nothing else. No hops anywhere in this. But still better than the skunky one I had before.

T: Really nothing special here. Just some semi sharp citrus notes with a soothing malt finish. Really aren't getting any hops here.

M: Well at least it scores some points here. It lays very nicely on the tongue with sharp carbonation.

D: Seems like a good summer beer. It has a lager feel with a bit of spiceness.

This has failed to impress me again. Stay away from it if it isn't fresh as it tends to skunk pretty easily. I must say their IPA is killer though.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2010 01:30:16 | More by generalnotsew
Photo of Thur123
Thur123

Georgia

4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a medium orange/yellow color. A small amount of head fades quickly and I can smell musky hops from the bottle. The smell is, upon sniffing up close, sweet caramel malt with an herbal bitterness accentuated by a slightly fruity smell. A balanced nose for sure.

Glug glug glug

The flavor is a present but mellow hop profile which is a nice blend of the smell. Bitter herbal hops flow into a sweeter more citrus rind like taste towards the end of the profile. The malt really rounds out the flavor by creating a tasty, mild and sweet base. In the end this is a better APA than I remember it being and kind of makes me feel bad for always going for the AIPA, but o well, a well made and tasty brew. Mouth feel leaves me satisfied.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2010 02:37:30 | More by Thur123
Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale from SweetWater Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 2,133 ratings.