Sierra Nevada Porter | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

very good
1,431 Reviews
Sierra Nevada PorterSierra Nevada Porter

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

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-09-1999

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,431 | Ratings: 3,614
Photo of Sabtos
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Coffee black with burnt red edges and an off-white foam head.

Smell is smokey, verging on hammy, with wood, moderate roasted malt, pumpernickel, and some catty hops.

Taste is roasted coffee, cocoa, wood, with light lemon and pine.

Soft and frothy with light acid.

Very unique for the style, but for such a hop-focused brewery, this should be no surprise.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a Sierra Nevada tulip. The pour is dark brown in color, not too opaque (light gets through), and sports a nice 2 fingers of persistent foam. Typical porter-like nose. Sweet toffee, toasted malt, and a little roast.

Medium body with a firm feel and balanced flavor. Not too sweet or too roasty. Toasted malt and toffee up front, then some roasty notes and hops. Typical porter. Good example of the style that is readily available.

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Photo of MizzouBrew
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Pours a dark brown with reddish tones and a half inch head that doesn't last too long, but leaves a thin layer of nice lacing. Light to medium feel, and tastes more of coffee than chocolate, with a lasting mild bitterness.

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Photo of kalosjakar
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium brown on the pour, 1 finger white head.

Aroma: light chocolate and roasted notes

taste: similar, chocolate and roasted notes. nothing out of the ordinary but an original executed well.

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Photo of acmurphy696
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is neither the best porter I've ever had nor the best Sierra Nevada product, but it's not bad.
There's not really anything distinctive about it's flavor, but I can't complain too much.

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Photo of Everydayoff
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Very deep brown to almost black in color, the pour builds up thick fluffy light tan head that stays with very good retention before slowly sinking to an eternal bubble film atop and leaving plenty of sticky lacing ring, patch, and spot all around.

Rich in roasted aroma that reminds me of black coffee, chocolate, and cocoa nibs. Dark bread too with a slight touch of caramel and sweetness from malt.

The taste is like the aroma but more pronounced of heavily roasted and a bit more astringency, cocoa nibs, black coffee, roasted malt, sourness of roasted coffee bean, some chocolate creaminess, some astringency, dark bread, some sweetness, and some caramel. Hop is also there with a slight touch of bitterness.

Medium body, smooth mouthfeel with very good crisp and good lively carbonation, pleasantly dry finish.

Good American Porter without doubt, it will never go wrong when it comes to Sierra Nevada.

 949 characters

Photo of ManapuaMan
3.79/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada is so fucking consistent. Wherever I am in the country I feel confident picking up a cold sixer and its gonna be good beer. This Porter is no different; scooped up a six pack while on Oahu. Dark brown pour with a sudsy head that lingers. Foamy lacing clings to the glass. Aroma of molasses, coffee, roasted malt. Taste is roasted malt, light toffee, light caramel, faint coffee, wispy chocolate and a kiss of bitter hops. Mouthfeel is more watery than creamy; nicely balanced carbonation gives it a solid overall body. Great beer.

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Photo of moose1980
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smooth, well-balanced, with the medium-high carbonation lending to a dry finish and making for a very sessionable porter. Roasted malts and bitter coffee notes dominate. Seems like it would go great with a burger or soft cheeses.

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Photo of TH28
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle. Creamy white head that dissipated rather quickly. Pick up strong roasted malt and coffee aroma right away,Taste is sweet up front with very rich malt. Coffee really comes out at the end, with less bitterness than other porters. Finishes very smooth and clean. Medium body and well balanced. Overall, one of the easier drinking, better porters I’ve had.

 376 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sierra Nevada can't seem to make a beer that doesn't look impressive. This is one of those archetype west coast craft porters. Dark brown, full inch of tan head. Smells like the usual hallmarks of style, coffee, chocolate malts, burnt deep.

Taste, wow, Cascade hops and a nice bitterness backed up by a strong roasty presence. Not overly thick, these are fun in 12oz increments, no need for a Chicago pour here. Straightforward stuff, and quite the classic.

 464 characters

Photo of FriedSlug
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark and clear caramel colored beer with a tan head. The smell is toasted malt with hints of coffee and chocolate. The taste is sweet and toasty with a nice malt flavor and coffee notes. A slightly bitter finish. Classic and tasty porter.

 238 characters

Photo of ThemThangs
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Very balanced, not too bitter, not too sweet. The flavor notes mostly remind me of roasted nuts. Drinkability is quite high with this beer, I could drink more than one if these in one session and not get tired of it.

 218 characters

Photo of Ferb
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is an American porter that comforts, and isn't too pushy. It has a nice color and aroma, a good dark roasted malt flavor and just enough hops to keep the sweet in check. If you don't know if you like porter, or don't care for over-the-top stouts, this is one to sample to expand your tastes. I will often keep a six pack as an everyday beer.

 349 characters

Photo of matcris
4.26/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

APPEARANCE: Nice rich dark brown, a touch of ruby up to the light. 2 + fingers of tan, creamy head that lingers all the way down. The beer leaves a nice thick lacing down the glass.
AROMA: A bit floral right away. Then a good amount of roasted, sweet, malt, dark bread, light chocolate and coffee notes.
TASTE: Caramel, sweet roasted malt, medium dark bread, a little coffee, a little chocolate.
FEEL: Med. thin to medium body, sticky up front and drier towards the finish. Decent carbonation.
OVERALL: Nice, easy to drink porter. Good body, not too thick for a porter, just right. I prefer Bell's porter because the chocolate and coffee notes from the malts are a bit more intense, but this is a nice beer.

 707 characters

Photo of caribou43
3.47/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

In my point of view, it is a light porter, easy to drink. The color is black, brown and thin foam. Roasted malt but there is a side sweet, not bad, it could be more bitter in my point of view.

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Photo of drtth
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours out into a Duvel glass a dark brown, almost black color with a 1 & 1/4" light brown head that slowly receded to a think cover over the liquid an dleaving a ring of leggy lacing and foam around the glass. Sipping creates a collection of small speckles and legs of lacing.

The aromas include some chocolate or cocoa and some hoppiness.

The flavors have some cocoa and coffee along with some sweetness and fruity hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The finish begins with the sweetness and chocolate/cocoa sliding away to leave some light bitterness and something which seems almost but not quite charred.

This seems a well made porter that I'd be happy to have again. It would make an especially nice choice to serve with a backyard barbeque or sitting around after dinner with a plate full of cheeses and some good conversation.

 886 characters

Photo of JakeScully
4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The West coast version of a porter and this felt pretty good sipping this on a cold evening. Warms the body and the chocolate and coffee aroma would make for a great breakfast. At 5.6%ABV this one won't hit you too hard. Cheers!

 228 characters

Photo of GreatStoutman
3.79/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours deep amber/brown from the bottle. One finger, beige head hangs on and leaves a light lacing.

Smells malty, but nothing too strong. Lightly carbonated and rather thin mouth. Taste kind of toasty and bitter, sweetness is there but nothing incredible. Its a well done porter but I'm having trouble getting excited about it.

Overall this is a good beer, and probably a good example of the traditional form, but its light and doesn't give me anything I would chase after.I really like SN, but this isn't their best, and not bad either,

 538 characters

Photo of theskjoung
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very dark color. no prominent smell. It has a hint of chocolate and malty sweetness and toasty bitterness in the taste. The body is sort of light but not dry.

 158 characters

Photo of aleigator
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Roasted brown, filtered, with a solid beige head, which lasts pretty long. Sweet, roasted malts, bread and toffee. Smooth, oily mouthfeel, with a subtle freshness, due to the present carbonation. Malt defines this ale, its getting even more present in the end, with an upcoming burned toffee sweetness. Great balance between sweet and roast malt flavors. Subtle coffee notes add a pleasant complexity, which creates a warm, sweet impression on the palate. Taste doesn’t linger too long on the tongue, easy drinkable. Still, this beer leaves me satisfied, with an impression of a very well balanced porter.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.71/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Semi-opaque fairly bubbly deep mahogany with mountainous golden brown cap of great retention. Numerous ringlets and larger patches of exquisite lace. Roastiness and toffee, with trace cocoa, well-done meat, and leather aromas. Smoke tartness along the lines of coffee, perhaps tobacco and also toffee sweetness throughout to the taste, not much beyond that to parse out beyond minimal earthen hop flavors in the finish and mildly peppery sensation to accompany generally smoky aftertaste. Medium-bodied, a bit chewy, with very fine nitro-like suds at first, increasing in size as beer reacts to tongue and saliva. Has an almost underwhelming astringency to it.

 660 characters

Photo of StoutElk_92
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark maroon with a creamy frothy light khaki colored head. Smells like roasted malts, burnt toast, chocolate, coffee, dark caramel, molasses, charred brown sugar, mild dark cherry fruit, with herbal earthy pine and woody grass. Tastes like charred roasty malts, burnt toast, chocolate, caramel, molasses, brown sugar, roasted coffee, mild dark cherry fruit, with some herbal pine and earthy woody grass. Feels light-medium bodied, creamy with moderate carbonation. Overall a nice porter.

 493 characters

Photo of katybee
2.89/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

pours translucent dark brown; minimal head dissipates quickly

no smell to speak of, except light scent of bitter malt

predominantly bitter malt, with no hint of molasses or raisin....upon warming it becomes more than a little sour bitter, with no herbal tones

light to medium body, almost watery thin; clean, not smooth or creamy; the carbonation goes flat

not a sipping beer...drink quickly before the flavor and texture disintegrates; the carbonation holds this together......flavor is simply malt and bitter, no nuances........will never try this again

 561 characters

Photo of VDJ104
4.59/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really love this offering from Sierra Nevada just an all around good Porter. Decent amount of carbonation some might consider it a bit light. But if you wanted a beer with a nice roasted malt flavor but aren't in the mood for something super heavy this is it.

 259 characters

Photo of creepinjeeper
4.17/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I've been starting to explore more of SN's offerings. Better late than never, right? This porter is a fine example of how SN is an above standard brewery. Roasty goodness. Not as thin bodied as some porters can be. Sierra Nevada is =becoming a favorite brewery of mine.

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Sierra Nevada Porter from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
3.92 out of 5 based on 3,614 ratings.
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