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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Sierra Nevada Celebration AleSierra Nevada Celebration Ale
BA SCORE
4.15/5
Exceptional
10,334 Ratings
Sierra Nevada Celebration AleSierra Nevada Celebration Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
sierranevada.com

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Fresh Hop Ale; no spices.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-02-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,439
Reviews:
3,496
Ratings:
10,334
pDev:
11.33%
Bros Score:
4.35
 
 
Wants:
387
Gots:
2,021
Trade:
2
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 10,334 |  Reviews: 3,496
Photo of jonB
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Despite the deceiving winter landscape on the bottle, this is no winter warmer. It does have a a good presence of piney hops, that mostly cover up the alcohol on the finish.
The beer has the great nose and creamy mouth feel of most Sierra Nevada's lineup. What sets it apart are the biting fresh hops which dominate and do not disappoint.

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Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

growler to chalice.

A: Medium copper colored body, fairly clear. Pretty 1.5 finger off white, bubbly head that sort of had a second wind right after the pour. Excellent and lasting lacing.

S: Heavy (nearly harsh) hops and mild alcohol right off the bat. Very piney with a bit of wild flowers and grass. (Same grass that makes all those cows happy? Perhaps.) Mild straw malt aromas. Very nice in general, and well aligned with the style.

T: Hoppy. Like a West Coast IPA should be. Slightly metallic.

M: Full body with prickly carbonation.

D: Very smooth and a little bitterness makes it a very drinkable brew. Already poured another and this one's smoother yet.

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Photo of Flashsp2
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Celebration 09 into medium chalice

A medium pour generates a big creamy beige head that leaves webs of lace and a clump of residual head on top. The body is orange with gold and red highlights.

The aroma is sticky and sweet, caramels, oranges, pine, and earthy/herbal hops. Smells very balanced and inviting.

The palette is not as balanced as the nose, which is fine, that's how I prefer my IPAs. Initially there is a soft caramel and bready sweetness, which is quickly run over by the PNW hops. Lots of citrus (primarily orange and tangerines), pine needles, rosemary, herbal, with a big bitter/salty and sticky hop finish that lingers for quite a while. The alcohol isn't present as a flavor component, but it gives a touch of warming. I love the fade from sweet to bitter.

Body is medium with a medium carbonation, and is a bit slick on the entry, and a softness in the middle.

Easy drinking, with a nice bitter finish that is crisp and invites further quaffing. Although SN beers all have a bit of similarity (most of them), they are all quite tasty. This takes a second only to their Torpedo in terms of their best IPAs, and this one is pretty close to that one. I prefer the Torpedo though, as it's a bit drier and less malt focused.

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Photo of mdavis31481
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2004 Edition

As I surveyed my refrigerator in search of a libation to celebrate my recent move to New York I was first tempted to imbibe a Dreadnaught or Hercules, but upon further inspection I came across a brew so aptly titled it proved impossible to ignore. Obviously I speak of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale.

The beer pours a hazy dark amber hue with tiny particles seen floating around. The rich, fluffy off-white head slowly dissipates leaving decent lacing. The piney hop aroma is joined by subtle bready malt notes.

The initial sip yields obvious piney hop flavors that are soon joined by malty sweetness. The hops once again assert themselves, but are soon met by malt to finish off the experience. This is one superbly balanced brew. In both taste and aroma, the alcohol becomes more apparent as the beer warms.

The mouthfeel is slightly heavier than the typical IPA and quite enjoyable.

I feel it is important to note this beer is coming up on a year in age. In that time I believe the hops have become somewhat subdued and the carbination has settled down a tad.

Overall Sierra Nevada has produced a fine brew that many do and should envy. I look forward to the 2005 release.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of MrIncognito
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a tuliped pilsner glass.

I bought a 6-six pack of the 2007 in early January after I heard of this beer's existence.

It pours a nice reddish-brown, transparent (not foggy) color with a great off-white head (2-3 fingers) with a careful pour. The bubbles are champaign-like and the head stays solid for awhile. Incredible lacing as I drink. Even at the very end of the drinking session I still had a small 1/4-inch head.

Smell is of oranges and spice, very Christmasy and great for winter. Nice hop smell.

Taste is very hoppy with that same slight orange and spice flavor. Very crisp. No taste of alcohol that I can tell

Mouthfeel is smooth with a bite of hops at the end. Carbonation is just about perfect, not soda-like at all and definitely not flat.

I think this is a very good beer. I could even see drinking this in the summer on a nice evening outside, but perfect for winter. I think it gets better and better as it warms up and like more every time I crack a bottle.

Well worth a try.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes, though I'm sure J have had this nearly 50 times.

Pours a brownish amber color with a nice white head and that sticky hop type of lacing. Nose brings a good dose of citrus and pine hops plus some caramel and sweet bread. Nice combination of hops and malt for the colder seasons. Drinks quite well and is a staple in our fridge every time it is available.

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Photo of maddogruss
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My friend hooked me up with a bottle of this beer.

A: Pours a nice, golden body with a silky, white head with excellent retention and lacing along the sides of the glass until the finish.

S: A nice, hoppy citrus smell with grapefruit undertones. Nice smell for an IPA.

T: A really hoppy taste in the beginning that mellows out. Citrus/grapefruit undertones come out later to balance the hop taste very well.

M: A nice, smooth mouthfeel that is very welcoming in the palette.

D: A very drinkable beer. Excellent combination of smooth mouthfeel and balanced taste makes this an IPA that is easy to drink and enjoy.

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Photo of Antc2382
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into a pint glass. It's nice to have an IPA for a seasonal holiday drink.
A: amber with lots of dusting of a beige head. This cascades down the glass. Nice looking beer. S: fresh hops and bready malts. T: nice and balanced.. Hoppy, piney, similar to their classic APA but more bitter. Nicely ending of that biscuity malt. Good stuff. F: pleasant bitterness left on the palate. Goes down fairly easy, depending on your preference on an IPA. O: a seasonal well worth the wait. I'll like to have this in 2016 again.

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazy deep copper with a dense 2 finger cream color head that is in no hurry to fade. Sticky lacing. Stunning as always.

Dense hop aromatics of pine and citrus. The pine is like fresh cut Christmas trees in my glass. Pale malts of sweet caramel. So fresh.

Hop forward again, but balance is outstanding. Freshness is key, as the hop oils from the 3 C's really take hold with a nice piney bitterness. U think it will last thruout, but then the sweet malts kick in the depth with a caramel goodness and toasted biscuits. Sharp, clean, bitter and spicy. Perfect winter ipa.

M- resinous texture makes for a mid body that is fairly creamy and sticky. Smooth drinking despite the well times bitter tones in the finish. Slightly dry finish

Love it. Always have. Always will. There is a reason this was one of my first clone home brews. i enjoy thick, chewy, winter warmers this time of yr, but this ipa is my fav xmas beer.4

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Photo of MarkSCCOT
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hmm, Sierra Nevada knows how to make an IPA and at least (with the exception of Bigfoot), stick to it.

Poured from a 12 ounce into a pint glass.

A. Average. A reddish mahagony light clear brew with a small head that settles to little or nothing with no lacing.

S. I could tell this was a SN beer with my eyes closed. Big piny citrusy grapefruit hops with little to no malt.

T. Similar to it's smell. Big West Coast hops. Pine, grapefruit hops. The malt is more evident in the finish.

M. Citrusy oily beer with a clean finish.

D. A great winter session beer.

My only down is that it tastes real similar to most of their other beer. Bigfoot Barleywine (esp. aged, the 2004 was spectacular) and the Harvest (even more hop slap) are different, but the rest of the line is real similar. I think that when I first started in craft beer this would have been too much beer for me. But with the inevitable drift towards hops, it is a strong quality beer.

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Photo of CJCouillard
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DudMan
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Clear amber beer with a 2 finger head and some lacing. Smells of pine and citrus. Tastes piney with a nice malty and resinous finish. Well carbonated mouthfeel. Great beer for the holidays. I'll buy this again next year.

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Photo of AlexFreudenberg
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jakethal
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Got a growler and have to say this is pretty good stuff. Very tasty and not overly hoppy. First time I've tried it and I will certainly be getting some more soon.

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Photo of skrabbenhoft
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Wasatch
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Revisit: 5 Dec 17
2017 Vintage
PKGD: 10/16/17

Poured into a DFH glass a pretty nice clean/clear dark golden amber/orange color, pretty nice carbonation, pretty nice one-finger thick/creamy off-white head, with some pretty nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is hoppy, malty, with a nice little citrus complex (orange, tangerine, grapefruit, lemon). The taste is hoppy, with a nice maltyness, nice little citrus complex (orange, tangerine, grapefruit, lemon). Medium body, ABV hidden nicely, with a nice little dry/bitter finish. Overall, still a pretty tasty brew. SN is still staying with the more maltier Celebration Ale.

2016 Vintage
2014 Vintage

2011 Vintage

Again this year having it fresh, and available in Utah.

Pours a nice clean/clear dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice little creamy/foamy off-white head, with some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, with a bigger malt note, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy, and with a nice malt blend, and a nice touch of caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and slightly bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, pretty tasty. This years is more malty than past years.

2010 Vintage

Again this year having it fresh, been in the fridge a day, and available in Utah.

Pours a nice clean/clear dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice little creamy/foamy off-white head, with some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, pretty tasty.

2009 Vintage

Again this year having it fresh, been in the fridge 2 days, and again available in Utah.

Pours a nice clean/clear dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice two-finger plus creamy/foamy off-white head, a nice one-finger creamy/thick sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, a joy to drink.

2008 Vintage

Again this year having it fresh, been in the fridge almost two weeks, and again available in Utah.

Pours a nice slightly hazy dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice one finger creamy off-white head, some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew is slightly hoppier when fresh, but not by much in my book.

2007 Vintage

This is probably the first time I had a Celebration Ale within a month or two of coming out/available to me here in Utah.

Pours a nice slightly hazy dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice one finger creamy off-white head, some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew is slightly hoppier when fresh, but not by much in my book.

2006 Vintage

Pours a nice slightly cloudy dark golden amber color, nice carbonation, nice one finger creamy off-white head, some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy still, slightly malty, and caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and still pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew is still very tasty after quite a few months, highly recommended.

2003 Vintage

Pours a nice slightly cloudy dark golden amber color, nice carbonation, nice one finger creamy off-white head, some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy still, slightly malty, and caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and still pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew is still very tasty after quite a few years, highly recommended.

2002 Vintage

Pours a nice slightly cloudy dark golden amber color, nice carbonation, nice one finger creamy off-white head, some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, slightly malty, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is hoppy still, slightly malty, and caramel. The finish is slightly dry, and still pretty bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew is still very tasty after quite a few years, highly recommended.

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Photo of jackorain
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was a beer club selection by John. He thought he was buying this years but it is 2005. Not so bad though as now I can do a direct comparison when I the '06.

A-Copper to amber color, slight chill haze that cleared somewhat as it warmed up. 1/2 inch head that faded to a thin coat, with 1/4 inch ring, as I wrote this down. Nice lacing from the ring that stayed on glass until I was done.

S-biscuity malt and green hops, not extreme complex but good and strong.

T-Bitter green hop hits right up front, particularly when cold. There is a nice firm malt backbone that balances out the heavy handed hops really well. Strong bitter green lingering finish that was actually quite nice. As this beer warmed up the initial hop smack subsided just enough to further release the malt. This is a good beer.

M-very nice carbonation level, medium body with some creaminess and residual stickiness.

D-Very good, I could drink several

I can't wait to compare to the '06

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Photo of phishsihq
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This American IPA pours a clear amber color, and it is capped by a thin head of off-white foam that dissipates quickly and provides decent lace. Big citrus and pine aromas and a decent caramel malt nose. Caramel and bready malt sweetness give way to citrusy hop flavors and bitterness. Amazingly smooth and incredibly well-balanced, Celebration ale is medium in both body and carbonation.

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Photo of hopsolutely
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An excellently drinkable beer. Dull amber colour belies an awesome smell and taste. Supremely hoppy and well balanced. My limited taste buds are unable to distinguish the specific hops, which I view as a compliment to the brewer's blend. Taste profile has a distinct start, middle and finish, across the entire mouth.

Higher ABV than I'd choose, but a truly fantastic beer.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love this beer because its a little bit of a twist on an IPA, which is great for the winter time. For me, the spiciness that it brings to the table, in contrast with the hops adds for a great wintery feel for this beer. I couldn't imagine drinking it at any other time of the year.

For its ABV, its pretty sessionable and great for those chilly winter days. The spiciness not only exists on the palate, but also in the aroma. For IPA lovers, this is a great alternative to your standard hop blast.

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Photo of j0hnc2468
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MDekker
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 Edition

A: Pours a dark borwnish orange color. It forms a nice substantial head that thins but hangs on for quite a bit.

S: A pleasant combination of malty aromas that give a nod toward a winter warmer and fresh, piney, hoppy aromas of an IPA. Not too potent.

T: I remember drinking the 2004 edition in a taste test of Christmas ales, and it compared poorly - however, that was because this one is styled as an IPA and the others were traditional winter warmers. As in the aroma, the bready malt flavors are there, but gentle, and then it shifts to hoppy notes and a bitter aftertaste that lingers for quite awhile. It's good.

M: Smooth and creamy, as IPAs go. Also pleasant.

D: A pretty easy drinker, although I'd get sick of the aftertaste too quickly to drink a lot of them.

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Photo of choda
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of wheatyweiss
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer of 2004 from a liquor store trying to get it sold...not a bad buy at 5$!!

Presentation was a 12oz brown shorty bottle with a nice winter scene on the label. Dated 2004.

ABV = 6.8%

Appearance was a medium amber color with a nice bubbly off-white head that left slight lace around the top of the old pint glass.

Aroma was hoppy and full bodied with a few fruity estery type tones.

Mouthfeel was average, with a crisp, medium carbonation reaction on the tongue.

Flavor was a punch in the cascades!, the finish had a little bit of a burnt caramel flavor that melds nicely with the hops.

Overall this was a damn good seasonal IPA that I'll look for next Christmas-time. It was refreshing, crisp and beautifully balanced.

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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.15 out of 5 with 10,334 ratings
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