Sierra Nevada Pale Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

3,007 Reviews
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

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

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor.

37 IBU

Added by kbub6f on 07-05-2001

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 3,007 | Ratings: 11,182
Photo of rodbeermunch
5/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well here we go, review #1801. . . and we have our second perfect 5 score.

Comes across an amazing beauty full of dark gold, caramel and amber appearance with just under 1" of white head. Aroma smacks of old school dry hopping with Cascades. Caramel notes from the malt.

Taste, just heaven, hoppy, yet a sturdy malt bill providing caramel backbone. Hop flavor is plenty of forest, grapefruit. A delicious bitter edge remains through the entire mouthfeel. A darker citrus edge throughout. Barely sweet malt presence that is smooth while the hops provide bitterness, and an almost Magnum hop like spice edge to it.

The absolute classic American pale ale.

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Photo of EnzoDamario
4.37/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I'm a big fan of happy beers. Aroma instantly got my attention. Cascades hops do their Job. Not impressed by the appearance, looks like a standard APA. Tastes just as it smells, great happy sensation but not over bitter. Carbonated to the right point, it produces a nice mouthfell. Nor dense neither watery.... nice bubbling. Very drinkable and refreshing. Aftertaste is asome. An excellent beer.

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Photo of MusaJames
3.56/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Right away I like the look. Much darker than I had expected doesn't develop a giant head. Hops are the only thing I notice when I smell as my nose isn't the best at these things. Once I start drinking it starts really refreshing with a lingering bitterness. I'm not a giant fan of hoppy beers but this one manages to win me over. The only thing that I don't care for is the lingering bitterness. Having said that it isn't a big deal. Sierra Nevada Pale ale is a beer I've seen all over the place and haven't given its day in court for some time. I now understand its popularity is well earned.

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Photo of Mikefilmerca
4.51/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This used to be my favorite beer. However I've been consuming local micro brews lately. . It was so refreshing to drink another one of these today after several years away. I'm going to start drinking it again! Not overly hoppy.

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Photo of Beertsipper
4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Copper gold in color with a small beige/white head. Lots of bubbles going up the side of the glass. Smell is hops, bread, lots of pine, and some light fruit. Taste follows the nose.More pine. Great balance with the hops. Good carb, dry finish, and refreshing. Classic beer representing this style. Always available, and is also in many of the sports bars in my area.

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Photo of FBarber
3.94/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

With almost 3,000 reviews there is not much to add here. This is a classic beer from Sierra Nevada - Always easy drinking, flavorful and well crafted. In the realm of APAs this is more earthy, bitter, and a touch spicy thanks to the cascade hops. Great balance between the hops and the malt here as this is a very balanced beer.

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Photo of Sheppard
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a caramel reddish brown. Transparent, but not the color I would expect. Piney aroma that translates through to the flavor. There is a good amount of caramel malt sweetness. This is a solid and old reliable beer, but there are so many pale ales that I'd rather drink if in my fridge.

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Photo of Beginner2
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A well put-together ale.
But do not take it from me, take it from the experts.

MJ's 1999 "Guide" gave it 4 of 4 stars (very rare) and said "it has a teasing balance between the piney Juniper-tasting Cascade hops and the fruitiness of the top-fermenting yeast."
Listed in the "1001", this classic deserves to be there and craft brewing would be different today were it not for this Pale Ale's offering a tasty alternative so early and making so much of the craft market.
Reviewed also and favorably in Roger Protz' CAMRA classic "300 Beers To Try Before You Die!"

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Photo of 88caprice
3.99/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A few suspended particles away from crystal clear. Brilliant orange honey color, active bubbles, and decent foam retention along the top. Smells like a walk through a cool pine forest. Tastes piney and citrusy with a malty, biscuity finish. A biting mouth feel from all those bubbles. A quality, well-made APA that does it right.

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Photo of JakeScully
4.01/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Have to say i had the first time being a European this year and let me say it was excellent and very tast. The poster boy for the American Pale Ale style. Will have this again for sure!

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Photo of beerbaron1967
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Finally get a chance to try this beer. Heard good things-now my turn to try.
The colour is almost see thru-very light amber. You can smell the light aroma of the hops.Not pungent at all.
The taste is amazing---so glad i tried this beer.
Mild carbonation-which of course means you don't feel bloated after drinking this ale.
Overall very impressed

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Photo of brewandbbq
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle.

Pours light copper with a white, tight head. Nice lacing and a solid skim coat throughout the glass. Light hops in the nose. Orange citrus, pine, and light grapefruit. On the light side of medium bodied. Crisp but smooth. Light malt lays down the base on the palate with a balancing bitterness and pine-rubbed orange. Finishes fairly dry and quick with fading citrus.

The first I had this beer I was blown away by it's bright citrus and solid bitterness but after years of palate shift, it just comes off mild and average.

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Photo of Raidersox
4.74/5  rDev +17%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Packaged on 6/2/15, old I know but was in a hurry and grabbed a 12 pack of a trusted brew. Chilled to 38 degrees, poured into large wine glass.

Look: Hazy gold orange with 1/2 inch off white head that dissipated quickly leaving a ring of foam and light lacing. Good carbonation.

Smell: Overtones of citrus (orange and tangerine), spice and a light pine resin.

Taste: Citrus and pine hops balanced by a light malt sweetness. Spiced Dry finish. Lightly grassy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and well carbonated, sharp.

Overall: Despite the age of this sample I was pleasantly surprised. This is a very drinkable pale ale but I want to try a fresher bottle and compare this review to the new one. This deserves a second look to see if the legend of this brew holds up.

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Photo of chuckpalka
4.34/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have had this beer many many times so what can be said about this classic outstanding brew that hasn't already been said expect that it is near perfect. The look is amber/copper with a nice white head. The smell is subtle with a nice balance of hop ,malty combo. The Taste is even better that starts very easy and finishes with a easy hop bitterness. Feel is again a great combination not thin and not strong.... just right Overall this well balanced pale ale is very hard to beat.

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Photo of mgwagman
4.85/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of the first "micro brews" I started with 20 or so years ago. Strong pale ale with lots of hops. Balanced but very piney. One beer is almost enough, but two usually are the limit for me.

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Photo of BierRunner
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After all this IPA, it's nice to return to a traditional style. A dry but refreshing beer you crave walking off the 18th hole after a sweltering round. Nice balance, pleasant taste and an effervescent finish. No wonder it's been popular for so long.

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Photo of akolb
4.11/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A nice, classic beer. The aroma is subdued citrus, and the taste strikes the right balance between malty and bitter. A beer that goes great with food and sets the standard for the style.

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Photo of cosmin
4.87/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I wish we had more of Sierra Nevada's product in Canada. I was never really a fan of pale ales until I tried this one on tap in the States. Wow. This is truly the bench mark for American style pale ales. Beautiful colour. Wonderful smell. Even better taste. Very refreshing and hoppy! At first I must admit I thought I was drinking an IPA. And at 5.6% ABV this is truly a remarkably balanced beer. I've been searching for similar products but cannot find anything comparable. A++ for this one.

We have this available in bottles in Canada (at the LCBO in Ontario) however it's pretty pricy at $15 for a 6 pack! None the less, I always keep a few in the fridge. I only wish they would bring Sierra Nevada's Torpedo IPA to the LCBO!

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Photo of davidperez
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a nonic pint, it pours an ultra-clear orange amber color with a frothy one-inch head with good retention.

The aroma is of citric, piney notes, with malty sweetness, caramel.

Upfront you meet a high and pleasant carbonation. Malty sweetness, along with a hint of biscuit, citric and piney flavors, hoppy bitterness. A very balanced beer, all the flavors are blended in perfectly.
Long finish. Medium to light body, smooth. Very refreshing and fully flavored.

I could drink this any day of the week.
Awesome beer this classic of classics is.

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Photo of Amateurbrewmaster
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Wanted to see what the hype was about. Definitely worth picking up again (or cloning yourself). From a can in to a pint glass. Nice light amber color with a decent white head. Smells absolutely amazing. Bold citrusy, pine, hints of malt. Taste follows smell to a T. Little bit of malt, punch in the face hoppiness, clean, bitter dry finish leaving me begging for more.

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Photo of Mont14N
5/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This historical Beer deserve a max. rating. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. ( and Anchor Steam Br. ) started the craftBeer revolution in the USA. On every visit of me in the States I want to drink one SNPA. Ken Grossman and Steve Dresler started to brew hoppy Beers in the early '80-ties. Now you have a lot of well hopped Beers. This make the hopfarmers and our tastebuds happy. Every american Beerlover should be proud of the story of this Beer & Brewery.

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Photo of jeffreywt
3.77/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A standard offering and honestly a good benchmark for a quality IPA. If you drink a lot of "craft" brews with extreme hops then this will seem a bit watered down but not in a bad way. This is my go to beer and the one that really got me interested in all the rest.

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Photo of Harrison8
4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a somewhat hazy golden hue, with a thick white foamy top and a good deal of lacing. The aroma has a pleasant mix of malts and hops, without much bite from either side. A hint of citrus is in there as well. It seems rather subdued, and standard. Taste is a range of slightly sweet malts, balanced out with some citrusy hops. Nice balance and contrast between the two. Mouth feel is nice and smooth. A little mouth coating, which is great. It really feels good. Overall, wow. A very good pale ale right here. I'll be returning to this one, I can tell. Highly recommended!

Served in a 12oz snifter.

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Photo of NateDyk47
4.04/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter.

Look: clear golden amber, thin white head, minimal lacing
Smell: hops & citrus
Taste: citrus, can taste orange, grapefruit, lemon; good hops flavor as well
Feel: medium bodied, medium to heavy carbonation

Overall: really good for a lighter IPA. Definitely prefer Torpedo DIPA, but this is good stuff too.

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Photo of HotDogBikeRide
4.39/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle without a date. Very unfiltered look, so much sediment floating (maybe it's just my glass, damn that's a lot), gold color. White foamy head, rad lacing.

Taste is extremely refreshing and very middle of the road. Little bit of citrus and dry hop, but ultimately so easy to drink and simplified. Not watered down, but quite thirst quenching.

Would like to try one again on tap or something. Great beer, feel stood out so much, taste came out more as the beer warmed.

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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.05 out of 5 based on 11,182 ratings.
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