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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale
11,371 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: 11,371 |  Reviews: 3,038
Photo of ajmoody76
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bought at local grocery. 12 oz. (355ml) bottle into a pint glass. a shade lighter than copper with a nearly white head. head was a finger width with nice retention.

nose was fruity with citrus fruits. nice hoppy bouquet. not a lot of malt presence. no off odors identified.

great taste. a little hop bitterness but more fruit. the malt does have a place in this beer but takes a backseat to the hops. not a lot of sweetness in this beer.

good amount of carbonation. nice brussels lace. meduim-fullness mouthfeel. grapefruit on the aftertaste.

nice example of the apa style. the hops are a little out front. very drinkale beer. actually have had many sessions with this beer. have not had this in awhile. wonderful beer!

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Photo of kjyost
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a beer glass which produced a nice foamy nice head and a nice nutty brown colour. It had a nice hoppy aroma about it, which did not disappoint as I drank it. A balanced hoppyness lingers nicely on the palate. A beer I could drink over and over, and makes me wish I could get a beer this good, this cheap in Canada. Sigh.

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Photo of mwagner1018
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Large frothy heavy body 3 fingers of head following brisk, but steady pour. Light copper, with yellow golden undertones in the color. Sporadic larger bubbles rising, definitely due to the natural bottle carbonation. Takes a couple of minutes for the head to settle down to a nice blanket on the beer. Steady lacing down glass.

S- Nice release of floral citrus hops, notes of grapefruit, lemon zest, and mild pepper, classic west coast.

T/M- Crisp fresh bitterness up front, followed by a nice creamy bourbon vanilla infused malt character, finished by a really nice grassy, grapefruity, acidic and oily, mouth coating bitterness. Slight creamy butter texture, very well balanced, but certainly hop forward. Nice dry finish.

D- A great "go to" west coast style APA, done as right as you can get, crisp, refreshing, but with enough kick, and caramel malt to balance it all out. Every time I have one...I want another one, that certainly defines drinkability...Between this and Anchor Liberty...they really IMO set the standard for what an APA should be...

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Photo of clemsonbrewer
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice clear pale golden brew with a big head as a result of an aggressive pour. Thin head remains on top and lots of sticky lacing clings to the glass. Wonderful smell of spicy hops and malt. Starts out strong and bitter from the hops and then smooths out with some maltiness and finishes very dry and hoppy. What a wonderful brew. Hard to say american pale ale and not think of this beer.

 388 characters

Photo of jmfc8237
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Has a nice golden brown hue with a touch of cloudyness. Almost caramel in color. Good carbonation and a nice white head boasting a large amount of tiny bubbles. Quick head discipation with moderate lacing.

S- Bright floral accents and citrus aroma. Very well rounded hoppy nose.

T- Lovely bright but not over bearing bitter taste. Gives a flowering aftertaste that lasts and lasts. The alcohol is very understated and has a great transition between the malt and hops.

M/D- A wonderful beer to sip on with dinner. Has a nice silky texture with bright carbonation. I love the price and it goes great with most any meal.

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Photo of 3rdRowTailgater
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an American pint glass. It pours a copper color with a nice, big thick head that lasts.

A very nice citrus hoppiness balanced with pale malt. Not too hoppy, not too malty. Great blend.

The taste is pure APA. It's got citrus and piney hop notes along with malt and ends with a slight bread taste. Really nice balance.

It's not too viscous and not too thin and the taste lingers just long enough. I could drink this all night and I have many times. It's a classic for a reason.

 512 characters

Photo of brewdoc75
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I decided I'd go with one of my all-time favorites for my first review on this site. I've had it bottled and on tap and it is better on tap, however I'm rating the bottled version here.

Appearance: Clear orange in color. 1/2 to 3/4 inch head w/ lively carbonation eminating from below. Quite inviting indeed.

Smell: A nice clean citrusy perfume. Doesn't scream of hops, but lets you know there's some good ones in there. There is a faint sense of malt as well, but not overly present.

Taste: Outstanding. This is what does it for me. The beer has a signature hoppy bite with a pleasantly clean citrus flavor that follows. A touch of light sweetness from the malt that brings you towards the end of the drink. The finale is a enjoyable bitterness which slowly fades until the next drink.

Mouthfeel: Light, refreshing, and always making my mouth crave more.

Drinkability: I usually have the option to buy this in 6 or 12 packs. I can never bring myself to by only 6 as I know that I'll end up going back to the store.

Overall, this beer is the reason why I am now an aspiring beer geek. It made me cross-over from the mass-produced garbage I used to drink so much in college. Now, as I try a multitude of other great craft brews, this beer is still there. I compare it to the original 3 episodes of Star Wars. I can experience it over and over again and never be let down. In the end, it will always bring me happiness.

 1,427 characters

Photo of palliko
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a cloudy orange with white foam and clinging lace. Aroma is floral hops, green leaves and lemon blossoms. There are some barley and malt notes, too. Initial taste caresses the tongue with silky smooth crackers and malt, balanced by dry hoppiness. Ethanol fumes work through the sweet grapefruit hops and brown sugar. Good beer!

 341 characters

Photo of Soneast
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep golden yellow color. A nice 3 finger off white head. The head starts out very bubbly at first and then creams up to a good 1/2 inch thickness. Pretty good lace on the way down. A ton of bubbles riding the entire perimeter of the glass.

A very nice, crisp, hoppy, pine scent to this that leaves a nice citrus aroma on the back end.

This has a nice grapefruit/citrus flavor with some delicious bitter hop, that never overpowers the whole beer. A great balance of malt detected throughout.

This beer is an excellent example of this style. Easily sessionable, refreshing, very nice carbonation and a very nice piney aftertaste. Due to the overall availability of this beer, it has become my session beer of choice as of late. I can get it at any liquor/grocery store and a good majority of bars around here carry it as well.

 836 characters

Photo of Chadbrew
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I would be OK I think if I could only drink from one brewery and that brewery was Sierra Nevada.
Pours out a honey colored slightly hazy beer with mild carbonation and little to no head.
Definitely some hops in this beer, you can smell them first and then some sweet malt.
The taste is a quick bitter-sweet that lends way to a nice malty flavor. Then there is a wash of floral hop aroma followed by a bitter-dry finish and a lingering citrus taste.
Mouthfeel is very good for this style. I expected a thinner beer but this has decent body.
A very drinkable beer. I had a couple with dinner and I think a couple more are on deck for the evening at least.

 658 characters

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.

 349 characters

Photo of NizzleEGizzle
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of northaustin
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured from a 12 oz into a pint glass. pours a clear yellow/amberish with alot of white head that disappears quickly and leaves almost no lacing.

smell is mostly just piney hops. a good amount of the malts are there but the hops are the star of the aroma.

love the taste of this beer!!! its amazing its taken me this long to get around to reveiwing. to date i cannot think of a better american pale ale thats better for the price. an almost perfect balance of sweet and bitter. its popular for a reason.

mouthfeel: doesnt leave a hoppy dry mouth and doesnt leave a sticky mouth. all i can really say is that for seasoned beer drinkers and beer noobies this one should go down fairly easily.

drinkability: 5 for five reasons:
2:available most everywhere
3:ridiculously sessionable
4:great beginner beer
5:i enjoy it and im god

 842 characters

Photo of hopfacebrew
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reposting review from hacked account (jmkratt) :(

I don't know how many SNPA's I've had through the years, time for a review. The beer when poured from bottle to a pint glass pours a golden color with a bit of haze and a nice 2 finger slightly off-white head. Good retention and some lacing. The aroma is an earthy hop pine and grass with some fruity esters in the malty sweetness. It's well balanced between the malt and hops in flavor with a medium body and solid carbonation. A nice subtle lingering hop flavor on the tongue. Pleasant. One of the APA's to beat, standard setter.

Serving type: bottle

 604 characters

Photo of Christoffer91
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Luigi
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I must say this is one of my favorite beers. Has a very hazy orange color to it. You can see the particals of yeast from the bottle conditioning. The head is fairly large and settles to a sticky lace around the glass. Smells hoppy with a little grain. Bitter spice, citrus,malts, and pine dominate the flavor. A very drinkable pale ale! I think it is the perfect session beer! In my opinion, Sierra Nevada Pale ale is truely a classic American beer!

 449 characters

Photo of Looneybiz
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass with one finger head and a nice lacing.

The smell is very appealing with a sweet yeasty aroma.

Upon tasting you get the malted barley right away folliwng by the bittersweet taste of hops that stays with you for a while.

Feels good in your mouth and makes ya want to take another sip.

Absolutely a worthy beer and not terribly hard to find either. Sierra Nevada's staple beer and great for those that love the moderately bitter pale ales.

 466 characters

Photo of magine
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

This brew pours a golden orange, with off white lively head that fades to a thin layer with some lacing throughout.

The brew smeels of hops, earthy backbone, citrus.

The brew tastes of hop bitterness (nice bitterness) very balanced brew. Bready malts, hops, citrus nice bitter hop finish on the finish.

Very drinkable. Very balanced. A classic, that is a staple in any beer lovers fridge. I havent drank this enough over the years. Drinks well year round - any occasion.

 500 characters

Photo of mynie
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Last had this when my palette was young. Let's see how is stacks up now:

Pretty pour, like any good APA. Dark amber with the slightest haze and a nice head.

Smells of floral hops. Quite complex. The hops are very dry and complimented well with hints of citrus.

Tastes great--just bitter enough. The hops are bittersweet and present upfront, all floral and citrusy, mellowing out in the middle and met at the end with a sweet kiss of malt.

THE session beer to end all session beers. You can find it anywhere, it tastes great, and it goes down like water.

 566 characters

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pale gold in color, clear, with dense white foamy head at about 1/4" but receded quickly to not much more than a fluffy ring.

S: Citrus hops are prominant on the nose, similar to a an IPA but not as pungent. A little agitation reveals more floral notes with the faintest bit of light malt.

T: This sure tastes like an IPA! A nice complexity of hops dominate the palate. Malts come in second, a distant second, this being a relatively dry brew. The finish quick and clean with just nothing but hop bitter lingering to the end.

M&D: A rather light and dry brew. Carbonation is fine but brisk and the brew has a smooth disposition. A fantastic beverage but I might have considered it an IPA. Especially if you like hops, grab one of these!

 790 characters

Photo of moundbz
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Looks like semi dark honey with some foam, great smell but not to fragrant, balanced crisp brew solid taste

107 characters

Photo of Bjm94
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of phantomanboy
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of hayes31
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A great smell to this beer, followed by a great taste. It's got a sweet aftertaste to it which makes it extremely refreshing, and it goes great with whatever food you may be eating since it washes everything away with a pleasant twang.

Its availability is a great upside.

 313 characters

Photo of wescj
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Srarts with a little more than a half inch of head, which quickly dissipates to a thin, patchy layer. Moderate lace. Mostly clear orange/amber, with a hint of haziness.

Hops are first thing on the nose, then citric fruits. Also some floral notes, with malt on the back end.

The balanced, dry hoppiness is what I love about this beer. Also very bready with some citrus in there, and just a bit of something sweet and spicy.

Crispy and carbonated, with a nice hoppy aftertaste.

Very drinkable, and a good ale all around. I wouldn't mind keeping a 12 pack in the fridge pretty regularly.

 627 characters

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.03 out of 5 with 11,371 ratings
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