Sierra Nevada Stout | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

1,422 Reviews
Sierra Nevada StoutSierra Nevada Stout

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

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-14-2000

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Reviews: 1,422 | Ratings: 3,353
Photo of nlmartin
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a pub glass.

Appearance: The beer poured almost solid black. No opaqueness to light. The head was almost an inch high cola brown coloration. The head quickly resolved but never entirely left the beer. The lacing made thin lines down the glass.

Smell: The beer had a very nice roasted barley smell. There was a nice earthy kind of smell about the beer.

Taste: The beer starts of with a sharp bitterness that gives way to a smoky roasted barley flavor. A bit of caramel pokes its head up. The beer finishes dry.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer is meduim bodied. The carbonation is good. Leaves a pleasing dryness in the aftertaste. A very drinkable beer and one of my favorites.

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Photo of againes
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark, nearly opaque blackish-brown.
S: Tones of pine, roasted malt are definitely vibrant here.
T: Very bitter, nutty, with coffee and unsweetened chocolate flavors.
M: Nice, full feel in the mouth.
D: Definitely a session beer for me.

Yet another excellent beer from one of the best breweries out there in my opinion.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic glass

A- Poured a very dark brown, almost black, can see ruby highlights through the glass. Nice two finger creamy head that leaves lots of clumpy lace

S- Chocolate, roasted notes, toffee, and a kind of spicy rye aroma

T- Bitter chocolate, roasty coffee, toffee, spicy rye, and mineral flavors

M- So smooth and creamy, nice chewy body, really great mouthfeel for a stout

O- This is a great stout, creamy, full of flavor, very drinkable, and a very affordable beer. That is a quadruple threat for me. Good job Sierra Nevada! The roastiness and spice is what I will most remember about this beer, lots of it.

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Photo of irishman06
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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

The head is thick and brown, dissipates but is magnificent for some time. Nice lacing for the duration though. Sweet and malty aroma; enticing.

Coffee, espresso, caramel, and chocolate notes. Some burnt malt. This goes down smooth. Delicious.

The best American Stout I've tried. I'll be using this as a Guinness substitute.

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Photo of karengarys
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Pours brownish black, but not hazy. Leaves a carmel colored foam ring with adheres to the inside of the glass as it is drunk.

Smells stout-like. Coffee and chocolate. A hint of a hop note appears.

Tastes very very laid back and balanced. You get coffee, chocolate, malts, and a slight pine hop bite which does not detract from the taste.

Mouthfeel is extra creamy rich.

The finish has a cleansing thing going on - that dry hop I love in the summer beers is apparent here a bit, giving it a refreshing finish.

This is one nicely balanced stout - refreshing, rich, but not overly coffee/bitter. I think this may become a favorite of mine! For those who feel Sierra Nevada is a bit too big to produce a good microbrewed beer, give this a try and rethink your position!

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with ruby highlights. A massive three finger head is dense and tannish cream in color. Oustanding retention and sticky patches of lacing. Rich malty nose; roasted barley, dark chocolate and coffee aromas are full and strong. The roasted notes provide both a sweet, and a bitter-charred flavor. Coffee becomes very apparent in the middle, and some mild baker's chocolate peeks through. Dry aftertaste, where earthy american hops finally become present and complete the near perfect balance. Medium body, lightly carbonated, and exceedingly smooth. Would make a nice session ale, but could work equally well as a dessert beer.

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Photo of sheeley
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Great dark brown color, opaque. Looks quite enticing.
Smell: Great smell; notes of malts, chocolate, and oatmeal come out to me.
Taste/mouthfeel: Excellent taste. Very earthy and full of malt. A strong roasted flavor that is full and rich.
Overall: This is an excellent beer and overall a great representation of a stout.
That being said, nothing about this beer is exceptional; it is simply a solid stout for the money.

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Photo of spitInTheOcean
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

big aroma of roasted malts. little whiff of coffee. low hop aroma.

jet black. ruby highlights. big persistent light brown head.

high roasted malt flavors. some coffee, but more like dark chocolate. no hop flavor but medium hop bitterness with medium roast bitterness as well. initially sweet but the flavor gradually passes to hop bitterness.

medium body. soft carbonation. perhaps a slight creaminess. though no real apparent alcohol.

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Photo of bfisher91
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Americans often over-rate their own beer, this is not a case of that. Best I've had so far from Sierra Nevada. Perfectly balanced stout, however not overly ambitious which is the only drawback. Definitely a stellar beer.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the better stouts out there. A beautiful opaque black in colour with a huge, tan head. Aromas of chocolate, caramel, earthy cascade hops, malts, and more. Flavors of roasted malts, chocolate, and everything else that you love in a stout. The mouthfeel is thick and creamy and the drinkability is also excellent!


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Photo of TCJ0100
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle (the last of my six pack) into a Bloomington Brewing Company stange glass. It pours a deep ruby amber that can only be seen held up to a light. Also pours a slight head which sticks around for a bit.

The smell is just like the description on the bottle neck: earthy hops up front, and then a nice roasted maltiness on the back end. It actually works out really well, and smells wonderful together although you might think that hops would be a bad thing in a beer this dark.

It tastes delightful. There are notes of chocolate, coffee, dark fruit, and herbal hops. A hoppy stout might not be to everyone's taste, but I think this beer is just delightful. The ABV is a welcome sight too, as I doubt you could get this much flavor in a lighter beer.

This is my third of these tonight, and it has been absolutely great. This beer is a gem. If you are looking for a beer that is easy on the alcohol but doesn't compromise on flavor this beer is a great fit. The value is unbeatable as well.

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Photo of leantom
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Sierra Nevada never ceases to amaze me. Here goes:

A: Pitch black with a one-inch head. Plenty of lacing as well. Couldn't ask for more in a stout. 4.5/5.0

S: This is going to be one of those stouts that tastes like chocolate and burnt malt. I smell coffee, chocolate and a tinge of caramel. Can't wait. 4.5/5

T: Again, very good. Not quite as good as, oh, Founder's, but still good nonetheless. Lots of burnt malt amounting to tastes of coffee and chocolate. The coffee is readily apparent and it gives way to chocolate and caramel. 4.5/5

M: Nicely carbonated, lies lightly on the tongue and is very enjoyable. 4.5/5

O: Excellent. 4.5/5

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Photo of ski271
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Very dark brown, almost black, with a medium, foamy, tan head with good retention. Good lacing.

Smell: Big roasted malts. Chocolate, coffee, nuts… all the things you should find in a good stout. A little herb and dark fruit in there as well.

Taste: Thick, bitter chocolate, light berry, very light vanilla and of course robust toasted malts. Almost a little burnt tasting, but in a good way. Very lightly medicinal, again in a good way, and a nice medium-long bitter coffee finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body, creamy texture, soft carbonation.

Drinkability: Yet another fine brew from Sierra Nevada. Mostly it’s a textbook stout, but it has a few quirks that make it just unique enough. A good, solid, very drinkable brew.

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Photo of Rosanne
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

taster: easy to drink, tasty, smooth, sweetness not overpowering. Need more to work out rating.
1/2 pint: sweet beginning, bitter linger, no molasses taste, again rated it a 4.5. Too watery to make it a 4.75

Shared a taster on-tap as part of four flights at the brewery; Sierra Nevada Brewing Co, Chico, USA. Then ordered a half pint later. Yum! As part of a six-week West Coast beer tour. I rate to taste, not to style. See my blog for more details:

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Photo of microbrewlover
4.51/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a solid black with mocha colored sediment suspended in and lying on the bottom of the glass. There is a two finger head which dissipates into a nice collar and heavy lacing.

The smell is full of hops, chocolate, roasted malts and bitter coffee.

The taste follows the nose with the hops forward, backed up quickly by the roasted malts, bitter coffee, chocolate then finishing with more hops. The hop finish is only slightly dry. Some booze leaks through but not much. The feel is thick and bready. This is an American Stout that smells and tastes like an Imperial. Let this one warm up a bit before drinking and you will be rewarded with a better range of smells and flavors.

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Photo of forsakenpariah
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle -> imperial pint glass

A - Black pour with tan head. Some very dark reddish highlight break thorugh the edges when held up to light.

S - Sweet and roasty malt aroma. Pretty awesomely balanced coffee and chocolate aromas dominate. Not much noticeable hop aroma to speak of, but that's actually not a bad thing in this beer.

T - Sweet and creamy malts with lots of coffee and chocolate. Moderate bitterness comes through in the middle and leaves a bitter chocolatey aftertaste.

M - Smooth and creamy body with medium carbonation. Simply amazing.

O - Definitely the best American stout I've ever had. I don't think it gets much better than this.

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Photo of aquaderek
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my session glass. The beer is dark, but when looked at in proper light has an caramel and orangish hue. The head dissipates very quickly to a light lace around the rim. The nose is sweet and fruity, some nutmeg and spiciness. The taste and mouthfeel are wonderful, first is nice subtle carbonation and hop, and spicy coffee notes, followed by a creamy, but not too heavy sweet honey. This is a wonderfully balance and drinkable stout. I can't believe that it took me this long to try this stout

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle into a duvel glass.

Out pours an opaque, seal brown body with a frothy, tan foam. The head cascades down the sides of the tulip, retains well and leaves decent lacing for the style. Very impressive pour, to say the least. Aroma is full of sweet chocolate candy, caramel malts, plum, apple, and other dark fruits.

The flavor throws a slight curveball: gone are the sweetened chocolates in the aroma, and instead the chocolate flavors are more like that of bitter, dark chocolate with some roasted malts to it. A smoked, earthy hop bite finishes off the flavor. Mouthfeel achieves perfection: medium body (not too thick or syrupy), carbonation level that's spot on, crisp finish, and a lingering bitter cocoa & hop aftertaste that stretches on for miles. The drinkability is quite high as well, this beer is refreshing as hell for a stout. Not only that, but its complexity and tastiness make for quite a memorable brew that I'll be sure to enjoy again.

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Photo of LeoPanna
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 fl oz. bottle purchased at EuroMarket in Queens for $1.99.

pours pitch black with a nice hiss from the carbonation build up. big solid cappuccino colored head, more than 2 fingers.

rich chocolate and coffee bean aroma...hint of malt, even some hops are coming through

damn that's a good stout... it's creamy as hell, smooth. great blend of chocolate, vanilla and coffee flavors. the alcohol provides a nice warmth. That's all I can really say, it's simple but perfect.

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Photo of cheers2beers
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Jet black liquid cascadeing to create a tan rocky head.Lots of laceing cling to sides of my wiezen glass.Looks like a stout should.

Smell: The aromas are coffee beans and a dark chocolate followed by a subtle woody accent.Aromatic malts and a hint of alcohol makes this a pleasurable moment.

Taste: The flavors are like the nose,as expected,coffee bean,dark chocolates,a sweet caramel malt with a very nice hop bitterness in the finish.Alcohol is present but not too potent,a great sessionable beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium to high carbonation with a thick and chewy body that makes you want more.

Drinkability: This is truely a magnificant stout.I will definitely session this one.It is a most buy and ranks on my top stouts list.Great job SN! Keep'em comin' !


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Photo of AlesRTasty
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - creamy tan head with nice retention. Dark brown colored and fairly opaque.
S - full of roasted malt aromas with some hints of hops
T - delicious coffee and chocolate roasted malt goodness with nice crisp hop flavors (it's my first 5)
M - if it wasn't for the perfect amount of carbonation I would think this was cold coffee.
D - another fine brew from SN. Damn, I need to buy this more often.

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Photo of BrewsCrewSA
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've had a run of Sierra Nevadas recently, all have been outstanding.

A - Poured from bottle into a pint glass. Poured syrupy and black with not even the slightest notion of light coming through the glass. A tan, foamy, creamy head that retained even throughout the beer. Sipping left plenty of rings spaced evenly about half an inch apart all the way down - only one of a few beers I've seen do this so clear.

S - Like sour milk, which I've always thought was indicative of a good stout. Strong malty aroma.

T - Exceptional. The very first impression that struck me was a lack of that fake/smokey taste some popular stouts carry these days. This is solidly a creamy, bitter stout that allows you to enjoy the true characteristics of the style. Even the aftertaste lingers a sweetness that stays with you.

M - Creamy and smooth. Looks like it has quite a viscosity but it actually feels great. Even friends who weren't fans of great beer noted that it had a good mouthfeel.

D - Same friends noted superior drinkability. Just a great beer overall.

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Photo of creepinjeeper
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz botle poured into Breckenridge Brewing snifter.

Dark. Really dark with a red velvet cake colored head. Lightly carbonated and minimal lacing. Not as heavy as the color would let you believe.Smells of chocolate and roasted grains. Easy on the palate, nice tasty chocolate hints and roasted malts. No coffee and no hop forwardness,. A really delicious stout; Sierra Nevada comes through once again.

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Photo of RedBeerHead
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours pretty much black with a very healthy off-white head. Rich Coffee and chocolate smell. Very smooth going done. This stout emphasis the best parts of what a stout should be. Good, rich flavor, smooth texture. Very drinkable. Definitely one of my favorites.

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Photo of seanyfo
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33CL Bottle poured into my delirium tremens chalice.

A - Jet black body, with 3 finger coffee coloured thick creamy head. Fantastic retention and produces wonderful lacing.

S - Lots of burnt nuts, dark bitter chocolate, a faint sweet spice to it such as nutmeg or cinnamon.

T- Roasted malts come through well, with a double cream background, sweet nutty yet bitter flavour remains in the aftertaste.

M- Low carbonation, very creamy.

D- A beautiful example of the complexity of a good stout. Fantastic appearance with sweet and bitter balance. excellent!

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Sierra Nevada Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.07 out of 5 based on 3,353 ratings.
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