India Pale Ale
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

India Pale AleIndia Pale Ale
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Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
IPA - English
ABV:
6.8%
Score:
84
Avg:
3.71 | pDev: 13.48%
Reviews:
332
Ratings:
382
From:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
 
California, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  7
Gots
  4
SCORE
84
Good
India Pale AleIndia Pale Ale
Notes:
Reviews: 332 | Ratings: 382 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hopefully its obvious this is an old review. Still have the shirt and the pint glass. Wanna say this came out in like '99 maybe? Could have been 2000.

Anyhoo, poured similar to a lot of their ipas/pale ales, darker than average. 3/4" white head, great retention for an ipa. The aroma was hoppier than about any other English ipa I've ever had. Lots of woodiness, pine and grapefruit to it. Think of Ichy IPA but with more hops. EKG hops might be here, has that earthy mild tree and citrus thing.

Taste was fine. A lot of C hops make me think this is borderline on the English ipa categorization, but I get it compared to today's proprietary hopped juice bombs. Malt had its share of heavier stuff, but nothing that should be foreign to a Sierra Nevada hoppy beer fan. This one tasted similar to pale ale, but seemingly with less crystal malt, and yet, more toffee notes. Burton yeast? I dunno. Around 50ibu with heartier than most malt bill and perhaps a mix of old world and old new world hops.

Apr 13, 2020
Photo of phartman133
phartman133 from Michigan

2.13/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

A nice copper big with a big head. It has pine and oaky smells. You can't smell the hops in the aroma, but you can once you taste it. Great IPA for someone who isn't into IPA's and who doesn't enjoy that hoppy taste. Goes down smooth, with a pleasant aftertaste.

Apr 22, 2014
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh from Maryland

4.08/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer served in a shaker pint, beer is amber and has a mild haze, nice white head, one finger, some retention, some lacing, moderate carbonation.

Aroma is very hoppy, very piny and earthy.

Beer is medium in body thins out on the end and finishes really bitter, strongly piny, very bitter, way too bitter for an English IPA but a decent beer, it is a shame this is being retired, oh well.

Apr 30, 2012
Photo of dlbrockmiller
dlbrockmiller from Oregon

4.42/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice shade of amber with a smallish head that settles slowly. It has mellow woodsy citrusy aroma. The taste is even better than the smell with a nice smooth mouthfeel, not too carbonated. It does have a bit of a spicy hops bite but not as much as some. Overall another nice beer from Sierra Nevada.

Sep 07, 2011
Photo of echoes
echoes from Washington

3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a glass.

A: Pours a golden-amber color. About finger-length bright, white head. Head dissipates rather slowly leaving an admirable spider-web lacing. Little bit of carbonation visible.

S: Smells like malts/bread and caramel (malt). Piney/earthy hops smell is also there.

T: Kind of herbal and sweet. Also kind of a bread/biscuit taste. Quite reminiscent of a pale ale because the bitterness isn't as high as most other IPAs I've tried. Does have a bitter aftertaste however. Not too bad though.

M: Medium-bodied and smooth. Pretty satisfying.

O: Might not be satisfactory for IPA fans, which I do not consider myself. As others have mentioned, it does resemble a regular pale ale. The bready/biscuit/carmael malts/flavors actually blend surprisingly well with the light hops.
Not too bitter and is satisfying IMO.

Jul 19, 2011
Photo of phiberoptik
phiberoptik from Illinois

2.83/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer just was not for me.

It arrived in a traditional beer pint glass with no head left on it, filled to the brim.

Nothing noticeable about the smell, frankly, less than 48 hours later I cannot tell you I smelled much of anything distinct other than the hint of pine hops and some malt.

This beer did not taste like an IPA should to me. No dominating hops, it actually reminded me more of a standard pale ale rather than an IPA. It was drinkable, but not nearly as enjoyable as I had hoped.

If this was the only IPA on the menu I would order it again, but otherwise no thank you.

Apr 20, 2010
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove from South Carolina

3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another stellar offering from SN. I had the pleasure of picking this one up recently. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 01/30/2010.

The pour was typically for SN, rich dark amber with a towering head of white foam that only settles after putting up a hell of a fight, lol. Nice side lacing then drips down the glass. Aroma is mild, nice piney hops, hints of grass. Very herbal and chewy, even in the smell, but I was looking for more of that tea leave like hop note I like in a good english IPA. Nice mellow, well rounded flavor. Hit with the earthy hops first and these mellow out quiet nicely before jumping back with a mild biscuit like flvor that rounds it out quite well. Warming brings more grainy and bready properties out and the stellar carbonation really lets the flavor pop.

Overall another solid and very well recieved offering from a great, great brewery. Could do this one anyday.

Jan 31, 2010
Photo of CanuckRover
CanuckRover from Canada (ON)

3.4/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A polished copper with big foamy head. Nice lacings all the way down.

Oddly enough, not a whole lot of hops in the aroma. Malt is a good deal more noticeable, with nice toffee and caramel notes.

Again, malt is surprisingly front and centre for an American IPA. Loads of sweet juicy malt with a strong toffee presence. Hops come a bit late to the party, but provide a pretty long lasting bitter finish.

It's not a bad beer, but a bit too subtle for the style. A bit of an English feel to this IPA.

Dec 07, 2009
Photo of donniecuffs
donniecuffs from New Jersey

3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy amber pour, with a thin head & not much lacing. Aroma was dominated by woody/citrus notes, and not much hop bitterness. The flavor affirmed this, but it was even a little more subtle. Medium-bodied, fair carbonation, and a nice dry finish. Certainly sessionable, but it just doesn't have that hop kick that most people have gotten accustomed to, even for an English-style ipa. I was surprised that the Cascade presence, which is Sierra's calling card, was less than anticipated.

Oct 02, 2009
Photo of smithflipper
smithflipper from Australia

3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pale amber in colour, poured without a great deal of head.

faint citrus, pine and sweet caramel.

Not a great deal of hop flavour for an IPA. some piney hops come then the caramel malt flavour covers it.

reasonably sessionable, not overly carbonated.

Pleasant but a touch plain jane.

Jun 26, 2009
Photo of ClockworkOrange
ClockworkOrange from Pennsylvania

3.27/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was shopping for some bottles at Jessup Beverage and ducked in next door to their bar to see what was on. I settled on this. Arrived in a standard shaker glass a tad too cold. Appears a clear copper color with barely a finger of lingering, off white foam. Not much lacing to speak of. Smell and taste is dominated by notes of pine with bitter citrus (lemon), and bready malts playing backup. Medium in both body and carbonation. I'd probably look elsewhere for my IPA fix.

Apr 28, 2009
Photo of MisterClean
MisterClean from California

3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Sac Brew Company's Sierra Nevada night.

A - Poured copper with a 1 fingered white head, which dissipated moderately slow and left little lacing.

S/T - Notes of caramel, breadiness, light pine, and bittering hops.

M - Full-bodied, very hop dominated and dry.

D - Not bad, but I expect much better from SN. Not their best effort.

Apr 24, 2009
Photo of cnally
cnally from Indiana

3.4/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at a buffalo wild wings. start the jokes now.

amber clear coloring with a fluffy distictly lacing head. not bad, but pretty standard.

pukey sour smell, the hops fade weakly in the background.

slightly malty and floral flavor. creamy and very subdued on the hop flavor which is always discouraging walking into an ipa. I by no means like hop bombs, but at least a slight bang of hops would be nice.

creamy feel. full and not cloying.

easy to drink but keep your nose out of the glass.

Apr 13, 2009
Photo of SykDoc
SykDoc from Wisconsin

3.43/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. It pours a transparent light copper. A 1/4 inch almost white head forms that reduces to a nice lacing.

The aroma was a bit unusual to me when comparing to other good IPAs. It has a very earthy tone with some background citrus and pine notes. The maltiness is readily present.

The taste was is similar to the aroma with some raw earth that is stronger than the hoppy goodness which is definitely present. The malt flavor is reasonable and it leaves a bitter aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is a light/medium body with a adequate level of carbonation. There is a dryness that lingers with the bitterness.

Overall, this is a fairly good beer but when comparing it to some of the better IPAs, it just fails to compete.

Jan 24, 2009
Photo of marc956
marc956 from Texas

3.42/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I enjoy IPA's (especially Stone Brewing Co. and Lagunitas), but was quite disappointed with this one especially compared to other Sierra Nevada products that I've had over the years. It was a bit too bitter for my taste and not quite strong enough.

Jan 03, 2009
Photo of yesyouam
yesyouam from New York

3.94/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada IPA is an amber ale with some tiny dust-like particles swarming around in it. It is topped with a small, frothy, off-white head that fades rather quickly but leaves excellent lacing. The aroma is of pine and citrus. Underneath that is straw, molasses, concord grapes and granny smith apples. The mouth feel is slippery and slick. It is light to medium bodied. The carbonation is soft. It has a softly numbing effect on the mouth. The flavor is of West Coast hops-- pine and citrus. The flavor sweetens a bit and ends up like cinnamon candy. This is like their pale ale with a little more oomf.
(rated Jul 17, 2007)

Dec 20, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
magictrokini from California

2.8/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours clear gold with a decent white head. Crystal malt and grassy aroma. But, this tasted just like a regular old Sierra Nevada pale ale. Crystal and caramel malt, tart citrus hops, and mineral water. Maybe if I had one at the same time as their "IPA" I might be able to tell the difference. Where are the hops? Not impressed.

Dec 16, 2008
Photo of nasty15108
nasty15108 from New York

3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured from a 12oz bottle (2007) into a pint glass.

A - Cloudy amber/orange color with a head of off-white foam.

S - Malty with hints of caramel and citrus/pine hops.

T - Slightly sweet up front followed by a slightly spicy hop bitterness.

MF&D - Nothing special. I don't think I would want to drink more that 1 or 2 of theses.

Aug 29, 2008
Photo of praufs01
praufs01 from Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Clear copper with a frothy off-white head and good lacing.

Aroma - Light malty smell with a little wet hay in the background.

Mouthfeel - Smooth with light carbonation.

Taste - Crisp and clean with pine and grapefruit domination the flavor.

Overall - A very nice IPA, of course most beers taste better on tap. I could drink a lot of these ; )

Aug 13, 2008
Photo of FtownThrowDown
FtownThrowDown from Ohio

2.73/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Another gracious bottle from what I thought was my best friend's fridge.
Glad I could be taking one for the team and alleviating his fridge of this goodliness.
Pours amber in color with a nice half inch head. Smell is some grassy, piney hops. Subdued hops, but they are there. Taste is pretty non-obtrusive IPA. Nothing to get excited about, and not enough hops to make it memorable. Easy drinking, slightly bittering. Decent beer, but will not drink again. Now where's my Two Hearted!

Jul 19, 2008
Photo of AgingWarrior
AgingWarrior from Florida

3.51/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice copper color with a thin white head that provided some lacing, but dissipated fairly quickly.

Smells hoppy, but not a strong as I'd expect from Sierra Nevada. Some other grain scents can be detected.

Nice hops flavor with some citrus tones and some malts. Nice finish, not bitter like others in the class.

Medium body and carbonation.

Easy drinking, smooth.

Jun 20, 2008
Photo of dnichols
dnichols from Washington

3.26/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was served an 8 ounce sampler from a keg at a Blues festival in eastern Washington.

A: It poured a bright orange body with a modest white head. The head retained well and supported a layered lacing down the side of the glass.

S: It emitted the aroma of pine and citrusy hops with a background of toasted malts.

T: It had a dominant hop profile that was well balanced by sweet toasted malts. The hops were piney and citrusy and the malts were creamy and sweet.

M: It was light to medium bodied with a bitter aftertaste. It was moderately carbonated.

D: It was a bit overhopped for my taste. However, there was an effort to present a balance, but, the brew fell just short.

May 13, 2008
Photo of nrbw23
nrbw23 from Ohio

3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- A nice rich copper color with a small head and very little lacing.

S- Very light and small amount of hops here. Pretty mild comparing to other IPA's I've had.

T- Not terrible pretty mild for an IPA though. Still a little better than the smell indicated. Some sharp spices, hoppiness and also some light fruit hints here.

M- Very little carbonation and felt very light.

D- Not too bad just like my IPA's with more bite to them.

Apr 21, 2008
Photo of JEdmund
JEdmund from Kansas

3.71/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(Originally reviewed on Feb. 21, 2007)

Appearance
Red/orange with a tinge of caramel; crystal clear and a moderate inch head which took some aggressive pouring to reach; head subsided quickly and there's a steady, minimal stream of carbonation bubbles.

Aroma
Smells of hops and bready malts. Nothing big hopwise here, which was both surprising and disappointing. It almost displays more malt presence than hops.

Taste & Mouthfeel
Nice crisp and clean flavor, which a good bite of hops all the way through, though not over the top like an American version would be. Light-to-medium body. The hops are balanced nicely by a subtle malt backbone. Even though the predominant flavor is hops, it's still not as hoppy as one would expect from Sierra Nevada, but to be fair, they were going for an English style IPA. Compared to Sierra's other IPA, Celebration Ale, this isn't as striking, balanced, or tasty. It's not a bad beer, but is fairly weak for an IPA.

Overall
It's a tasty beer for sure, but not one I would seek out again and again. I've had many other IPAs which stand out much more than this one. This is just too weak for an IPA, especially from Sierra Nevada. I will gladly stick with their Celebration Ale when it's in season. Otherwise, their Pale Ale is just as enjoyable, if not more so, than this.

Apr 16, 2008
Photo of Pencible
Pencible from Virginia

4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This poured a clear copper with good light tan head. It had a mild scent of wild hops and a bit of malt. It tasted surprisingly mild with a great hops flavor and a bit of malt balance. Perhaps some of the most delicious hops I've had (up there with the Dogfish Head 90 Minute). It was smooth and oily with no carbonation, and had an aftertaste that started small but built into a nice bitterness. Overall this was very easy to drink but also very flavorful. Great IPA.

Mar 29, 2008
India Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 382 ratings