Sierra Nevada Pale Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale
11,541 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 11,541 |  Reviews: 3,065
Photo of goindownsouth
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a real staple when it comes to pale ales. This brew is crisp and clean, with a mild hop aroma. This was the first pale ale I got into when I started drinking beer. From the initial sip to the bottom of the glass, it is clean and refreshing with a very balanced amount of hoppy flavor and aroma. A solid brew for any HopHead starting out.

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Photo of tigerpaws
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is one of the better Pale Ales I have tried. The color is very pleasing and pairs well with almost any food or alone. Not much aroma here but very easy to drink and would recommend it highly...........CHEERS

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Photo of Mark
3.66/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm sorry to all the fans of this brew but I find it overated. I just don't buy it Prefer the smoother british beers. As for American Ales, I'll take Anderson Valley and North Coast. I realize I had underated this brew quite seriously. While I have upped it's numbers I still feel it is a vastly overated beer. I'll jump over this beer to get at Bear Republic, North Coast, and English ale without hesitation.

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Photo of doerickson
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light amber color. Thick white head that sticks around. Hops in the nose, with some citrusy notes and slight soapy smell.
I found it hoppy enough to be just barely this side of an IPA, although still nicely balanced by a pleasant malt flavor. I realize now what all the fuss about Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is about.

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Photo of beerluvr
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the original micro-American Pale Ales, I remember scoring a sixer of this way back in 1984 (I'm on the East Coast) Seems to me to have become a little sweeter, a little more tame since I first discovered it. Pours nicely into the glass with a tight white head, with a golden color after things settle down. Nose is a bit yeast/fruity, with mellow hoppiness detected. Taste is sweetly malty, fruity with oh-so-sublte Cascade hops leaving their mark. Smooth, medium-bodied, and a pleasure to drink.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.68/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Rocky, white head that rises above the glass. Golden orange body revealing nice carbonation. Yeast particles floating down against the bubbles. Excellent lacing. Bracing floral and citric hop nose. Plenty of malt backbone to hang the hops on. This beer has balance, though it definitely leans to the hop side. Some grapefruit, but not enough for puckering. A beer I could (and have) drank all night. Not an example of an American Pale Ale, but the beer which defined the style. We must be careful not to take a craft brew cornerstone like this for granted. I am a grateful man that my favorite restaurant has this on tap.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This light amber brew throws out dense white head that clings nicely to the glass as I drink. Wonderful blast of hops on the nose. Tasting this is a treat. Great hop character. And great understated bitterness. Underlying malt is sufficient. Pretty clean tasting for an ale. A very quaffable brew. One of my favorite Pale Ales.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.37/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Crisp and hoppy with a light amber color. Not much of a head to start with but still very refreshing. Kind of jumps in your mouth. There is a slight floral and fruity smell that isn't over powering. Great on a hot day.

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Photo of ebraun
4.58/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My new favorite pale ale. The perfect balance of hops, sweetness and citrus. The rust colored brew seemed a little weak on the nose... but it's Texas in Spring so it could be my nose that's the problem. The beer itself was pleasantly herbal and peppery. For me the finish on the beer seemed to mimic a big slice of grapefruit, it was really wonderful.

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Photo of StevieW
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another one of my favorites, revisited it recently. I think it is the standard for American Pale Ales. Looks very inviting with orange/yellow color and off white head. Perfect hoppy smell matched with the fruit and florals. The taste is maybe on the hop side for some, but I find it perfectly balanced, flavorful, and refreshing. SN always produces a quality product, and this one is readily available. This matches well with all foods, and I recommend it to newbies like me.

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Photo of psugrad98
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light golden orance in color with a hint of cloudiness. Smells like orange blossoms and somewhat fruity. Slightly hoppy with a nice malt sweetness, kinda has a fruit taste to it. Very refreshing.

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Photo of Suds
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a resolutely enjoyable beer. Appears as a very pale, clear, burnt-golden color with small wisps of yeast swirling beneath the head. Crisp hops aroma and bitterness. This beer deserves praise as an example of rock-solid craft brewing consistency.

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Photo of jackndan
3.6/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Sierra Pale Ale: Good looking beer, cloudy caramel, had a big white head that disappeared in a few minutes. Wonderful aroma, sweet, with a little hoppiness. Hits the tongue with a little sweetness, and then a nice bitter hop bite. Several sips later, it seems the hops dominate. I can tell this is a fine beer, but the bitterness is a touch to much for me.

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Photo of John1985
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful gold color, fresh hop taste, malt tries a bit in the middle but gives up to the hops for the finish. Very refreshing and unique. As the beer warms the malt does come out a bit more to make the beer balanced. A take-no-prisioner pale ale!

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Photo of packetknife
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I grabbed this with huge expectations. I heard all this wonderful stuff but I was sorely dissapointed. It doesn't have a lot of character. It's rather run-of-the-mill. The exception being it didn't leave any aftertaste so it was readily drinkable with a meal. I feel like I should be at a farm when I have any pale.

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Photo of jtw5877
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a nice amber color with a decent head, hops are in your face. This is the beer that got me into hoppy pale ales, I love it, and it is readily available in my area. What else can I say... A real good beer to convert your macro friends.

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Photo of mickeymac
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

SN Pale Ale is an American classic: full of hops and topped with a beautiful white head. Out here on the west coast, it can be found in just about any drinking establishment, even those that stock primarily macrobrewed lagers. I've never had a bad one.

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Photo of jonnylieberman
4.45/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a staple. Bread, water, salt, butter and Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Nothing wrong with this beer at all.

I can drink it all day and all night and sometimes do.

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Photo of Murph
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has to be one of the best examples of an American Pale Ale out there. Pours a nice orangey-gold with a nice creamy head. Smell is nice citrusy/floral hops from the cascades. Huge cascade hop flavor that is nicely balanced by some malt. The malt is not strong enough to really be perceptable but it prevents the beer from getting out of balance. A nice crisp and clean mouthfeel and the beer is highly drinkable. As I said before, almost a perfect example of an APA. Highly recommended to all.

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Photo of frank4sail
4.69/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 Fl Oz Bottle. Golden color with a slight tint of amber. Not huge head retention but, a constantly laced glass. The smell of hop mflowers fill your head. Thick malty mouth feel and taste followed by hoppy bitterness. The finish mellows into a grassy/flowery/malty feeling of taste bud satisfaction. I can't think of a better mass produced American macro-brew product.

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Photo of marc77
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The thick, almost rocky, ivory - white head is well retained. It sits atop a very clear darker golden bubbly brew. Although the (ubiquitous in APAs) citrusy Cascade nose dominates the aroma, it is actually quite soft and pleasant. Not at all grapefruity, the Cascade hop nose is very appealing and clean. I've noticed dry hopping with Cascades leaves that "grapefruity" flavor/ aroma; Sierra Nevada uses a lot of late addition hops for aroma in their PA and doesn't dry hop. This brew is clean and well balanced all around. The assertive and clean hop bitterness dominates, but a firm maltiness manages to provide an adequate foundation for the hops. Yes. This is is the defining example for the style, although it's much better on tap.

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Photo of aracauna
3.35/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's a beer. Typical smell, bitter hop flavor. Not bad for the style. Unfortunately, I'm just not a big fan of the style.

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Photo of mmthompson33
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer has established itself as a 'staple beer' of those in America who take their beers at least a little bit seriously. It's right up there with Anchor Steam, although they taste quite different. Definitely a bitter hoppy beer. When I started moving past Bud Light, this was the beer that tempted me away.

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Photo of budgood1
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

cloudy orange/golden color with little yeasties floating around. pours a thin head which sticks to the glass the whole way down. smells of those cascade hops....citrusy and moderately pungent. mouthfeel is fuller than expected and tastes wonderful. bitter hops and slightly bready with a bitter aftertaste. more depth than i was expecting too. very tasty!

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Photo of bmills1608
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very light copper with hints of gold.

Hop citrus nose up front. Taste is lemon/grapefruit; slight floral spice. Malt dryness kicks in at the finish.

This is a super-solid beer, plenty of complexity, easy to drink. Doesn't make the mistake that too many American Pales do by relying way too much on hops and hops only.

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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.03 out of 5 with 11,541 ratings