Sierra Nevada Stout | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

1,425 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: 1,425 | Ratings: 3,359
Photo of mynie
4.07/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark but not perfect. Nice head, but not perfect. Good lacing.

Smells like toasted malt sweetness. It smells like most other American stouts, only more crisp. I wish I could do the odor most justice in my description... It's a *sharp* scent. Different.

Tastes like toasted malt and not much else. Nice but uncomplicated. There's a bit of malt bitterness in the back which nicely balances out the burn-sugar sweetness up front, but this is hardly complex.

A bit thin for a stout, and it goes down smooth.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

SN Stout pours almost pitch black, head is off-white and creamy. Aroma is of roasted malts and some dark chocolate. The smell isn't quite strong enough. Taste is a nicely balanced mixture of roasted flavor, hops bite, and dark chocolate. More creamy on the palate than I expected and definitely not as filling as I thought it'd be. This is one of the few stouts I've had so far and all I can think is how closely it resembles a porter. I really enjoyed this and now find myself motivated to seek out more stouts.

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Photo of twelvsies
3.98/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very doable stout. Appearance is typical of the style, very dark brown, but not quote opaque black. Nice light brown head. Smell doesn't really jump out at you, but a hearty malt base makes itself known as does a musty hop smell. Tastes is nice and malty, with hints of chocolate and a dry hoppy backbone with a touch of bitterness. Smooth mouthfeel and certainly very drinkable for the style.

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Photo of merlin48
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Can't believe I had never tried this one. Thanks to mtnlover for supplying a bottle to remedy my omission. This one pours a dark and opaque body with a small, creamy, tan head that retains very well and exhibits an enchanting garnet hue around the fringes. Patch lace coats the glass.
Aroma features the standard stout toasty and roasty dark malt characteristics of cocoa and coffee beans. A hint of figs and west coast hops add a solid note.
Mouthfeel is medium full bodied with moderate carbonation and a creamy smoothness.
The taste echoes the nice aroma, with cocoa and coffee beans, with a solid hops presence that is unusual for the style, but very nice. Dark fruits are suggested by figs and raisins, and there is a nuttiness that suggests walnuts. Finishes dry with a slight hops and roasted malt bitterness. Very nice!
This is not a very complex stout, just very solid and well constructed. Drinkability is excellent. Another solid offering from Sierra Nevada Brewing. Highly recommended for an American stout.

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Photo of tweeder263
2.98/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured out of the bottle dark with a little light showing through.Smells good coffee like. However in the taste department im not impressed. Leaves a bitter taste i cant point out but not desirable.Mouthfeel is thin,,its drinkable but doesnt have much of a place in my fridge.

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Photo of santoslhalper
4.67/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a deep almost-black brown with a frothy, pillowy chocolate head. Semlls fabulous. Very deep and complex smelling. Great hints of cocoa and caramel. Tastes follows the smell with a nice, nearly overpowering chocolate flavor. A suprising amount of hops in the finish for a stout, but rounds it off great. Nice and creamy in the mouth. A good beer, but an even better session beer. Given it's "lower" potency, but with how thick and heavy it is, this is one I could drink all day. My first attempt at Sierra Nevada, and this one is a keeper.

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Photo of cudowninazbay
3.39/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pungent aroma with a pretty full mouth-feel.

Espresso overtones with classic stout characteristics.

Pretty easily drank, but I would be reluctant to drain an entire 6-pack because it does have a decent amount of alcohol.

Although there is no mention of the content on the label I'd say it's about 4.00 ABV just about the same a Guinness here in the states.

I'd probably not suggest this beer to someone because there are just so many better ones.

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Photo of hobbes2112
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

Pours black with chocolate milkshake like head, great retention. Smells not too strong at first, but the chocolate and dark roast come out as it warms, really pleasant. Taste balances the hop and the malt really well, nice bitter taste throughout, and long malt finish. Not quite as much body as I would like, but getting close. I forgot how much I liked this beer, hopefully I will remember to make it one of my regulars.

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Photo of poundboy
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another excellent offering from Sierra Nevada. Just recently got interested in this brewery once I learned its history. Before that I had stupidly assumed it was no good because its widely available and comes in screw top bottles.

Quite possible my new favorite stout. None of the thin watery no taste you sometimes get with Guiness. Would love to try it out of a hand drawn tap or a nitro can.
Pours a true black with minimal head. Again maybe due to less than ideally clean glassware. Enough malt flavor to compliment rather than overwelm the characteristic stout roasted malt bitterness. Hints of hop flavor as well, quite apprcieated in a stout.

Not your over the top big beer or ultra flavorful micro style buster, but a great session beer. Something I know I could enjoy drinking all night long.
Note: if all my reviews seem to be coming in about the same, its because I don't bother to review beers I don't really enjoy, and I have a very hard time giving fives to any beer no matter how good. I want to believe something better can always be created.

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Photo of beerceller99
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. twist off capped bottle. Bottling code is 3273 ( Nov. 2003 )Pours black with a slight brown head. Has a nutty, roasted grain smell. Full bodied with a smooth, rich mouthfeel. Taste is of blackened malts, roasted nuts, and espresso coffee. Finishes with a long, dry espresso taste in the throat.

A classic stout.

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Photo of mntlover
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black red brown tints around edges nice fluffy brwo head that leaves nice lacing. Smells creamy dark roasted malts light coffee exprsso flavors. Taste is nice hardy roasted malt, light coffee flavors light bitterness complemented by small dosage of hops. Overall a nice solid oldfashion American stout nothing extraordinary just plain old creamy goodness. Mouthfeel is good smooth and creamy niceness. Drinkability is good been a while since my last Sierra Stout will not wait as long again.

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Photo of proc
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am suprised I haven't rated this one to date. The only reason I grabbed this is my six year old son said, "Daddy, you always get the green one (Sierra Nevada Pale Ale). Get the yellow (Porter) and blue (Stout) this time. Who am I to argue with him?

Pours out to a dark black in the glass with a minimum head. Aroma is that of a light, roasted malt and coffee. The taste is quite good, with afforementioned roasted malt coming to the forefront, but it isn't overbearing. This is a very, easy to drink stout and would be a good one, after say, Guinness/Murphy's/Beamish, to introduce a non-stout drinker to the world of darker beers.

Sierra Nevada continues to impress.

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Photo of skybluewater
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very deep black, with a bit of mohagany if I hold my glass up to the light. Some lacing, but not much. Smells a bit funky, dark chocolate and puddle water (hey, I'm trying). Taste is very bitter, like an espresso, with a touch of chocolate there, but not nearly as much (nor as sweet) as you'd get with an Imperial Stout.

All in all, this is a very solid stout.

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Photo of bigbeerdrinka
3.98/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark black color with a strong carbonation that creates a large fluffy offwhite head. Aromas are very malty and roasty with hints of coffee and a slight slight hop. Flavors start off very robust and roasty, with a slight astringency but a nice tone. There's a bit of smoke present in the brew, but very hidden behind a nice backing bittersweet chocolte, and some coffee flavors. This beer finishes creamy with a slight roast finish and a well pronounced hop character and bitterness. Overall a great example of a stout by the company that got me started into good beer.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours from the stubby brown bottle a beautiful opaque black with a nice 1 inch tan head. Just the way a good stout should look. The smell is of roasted malts and hops. Some caramel and light coffee tones are present. The aroma is wonderful and begs you to indulge. The first sip brings a wonderfully toasted malt flavor along with some coffee notes as well. The hops are definetly there on the palate as well...bringing this stout together in a sublime fashion. It's just a damn fine, tasty american bones about it. Mouthfeel is and full bodied. This one will fill yer belly. As far as drinkability...I dunno if I'd have more than a few of these...but I'd say that about the style in general. This is a great beer that I'm sure I'll revisit time and time again. Also, it leaves some very nice lacing patterns on my pint glass as well.

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Photo of afinepilsner
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle
This beer is black in color with a tan head. There are faint red hues when held to a light. It has a decent head with thick lacing. It has a roasty nose. The taste is roasty with coffee and chocolate notes. This beer has a medium to full body with good carbonation. A great stout that would be a good session beer.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.68/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The SN Stout pours an almost opaque black with deep ruby highlights. It has a frothy clingy tan head that goes to a collar and displays a ton of lacing.

Its aroma is appealing as well - figs, chocolate, roasted malts with some bitter coffee notes.

The flavor is fruity figs, chocolate and vanilla up front, followed by a strong metallic, almost chalky, bitterness that kind of rubs me the wrong way. It is thinner than I would expect yet leaves a sticky bitter residue.

Overall, this is a nice stout. If not for the off finish (to me at least), this would be a great one.

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Photo of Turbohio
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into a dark, nearly opaque appearance with tan head that quickly rises to a solid two fingers. Smell is mild, noticeable but not overwhelming. Nutty aroma complimented with the roast coffee typical with most stouts. Unfortunately there is a slight hint of acetone, that unforgettable acidic smell that is found in some of the cheaper stouts. Taste is roasted malt, lots of hops, coffee, chocolate, and maybe a little caramel (not carmel). Mouthfeel is okay. Lots of carbonation and effervescence for a stout, not very smooth. Drinkability is not really a word but in the case of this beer, where it is easy to quickly consume several in one sitting, that doesn’t seem to matter much.

Two of the best aspects of this beer is it’s price and availability. I’ve seen it compared to Rogue Shakespeare Stout, sold in this part of the world for $3+ per 22oz bomber. At $6.99 per six pack, which can be found in most major grocery stores year round, Sierra Nevada Stout earns it’s way into becoming a great micro-brew.

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Photo of Ricochet
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried this for 6.49 a 6.

Appearence: Very good. Dark dark dark and very little head. Looked a little bit more watery than other stouts.

Smell: Strong , appetizing, chocolatey.

Mouthfeel: Very thick. The watery appearence does not mean it felt watery. Very good for a stout.

Drinkablity: High! Easy to have a few of these with/without dinner , but I see this best as a dessert beer, after lighter beers have come and gone.

Taste: Very good. I gave it a 4.0 because it is truly exceptional for a bottled stout. Very hoppy, chocolate was slight and nice rounded flavor.

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Photo of sweethome
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

It has been a while since I've had a Sierra Stout - time to try one again:

Pours with a nice head, dissipates with an off-white lace.The nose is rich, with chocolate...but the Sierra hops are there too.

Taste is marvelous - full malty flavors I expect from a stout, but backed by hop zip that clears the palate while leaving a nice lingering malt roast/sweetness. Bready, but enough hops to know your drinking California beer.

Sierra is not a big chewy stout on the scale of Bells, but very tasty and drinkable.

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Photo of Ahhdball
4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big robust and black. Nice tan head topped it off nicely. A slight slick oily residue indicates some retention. As it hit my mouth the taste was a slight overwhelming at first but calmed into the following: Roasted nuts, molassas and a mild hint of chocolate. Although this has a mild aftertaste that has quite a longevity, I don't mind it at all. Great beer.

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Photo of malthead
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great appearance - really black, with nice big grey head that dies gracefully. Smells of chocolate and coffee, with maybe a few other hints here and there. Taste is dominated by coffee, bittersweet chocolate... I do like a good roasted flavor, but this one seems a little too burnt to me, and I'm not entirely sure the hop presence works as well as it could. Strong coffee aftertaste. Very nice mouthfeel, dry with good carbonation to keep it interesting. Good drinkability, if it had slightly less of a bitter, burnt taste, this could be my perfect session beer.

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Photo of Hibernator
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this out of a 12 oz brown bottle served in a pint glass without a freshness date labeled.

The appearance is a full and complete black color. Nice 1 inch head with solid sustain.

In terms of scent and smell...I'm smelling coffee, chicory and sweet molasses.

This is a really nice and full beer. This stout has been a staple for me for many years. Some hop bitterness at times, but in moderation. The real flavor appears to be a caramel sweetness and a bold chocolate combo.

Another consistent offering from Sierra Nevada. Solid.

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Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: As one would expect from a stout - dark ebony with a thick tan head. The head broke up slowly leaving lots of lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Subtle for a stout but hits all the right notes. Coffee is the first note, followed by chocolate and a mild hit of citrus.

Taste: Excellent. Sharp without being bitter, this brew has a strong roasted taste that's very well balanced out by a soft malt note. The primary note is certainly coffee but there are nice touches of dark chocolate as well. There are also hints of molasses and a minor hop finish to this well rounded brew.

Mouthfeel: This stout has the uncanny ability to have a very solid mouthfeel without being heavy. Soft bubbles have a slight creamy feel that leaves a very clean palate.

Drinkability: More! More! More! One of the things I kept marveling at while drinking this was that with every swallow my very next instinct was to want another sip. The spot-on taste and the luxurious mouthfeel managed to be very satisfying without being heavy - an astounding trick for a stout.

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Photo of nogoodreason
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A solid stout. Nothing to write home about, but still quite enjoyable.

Appearance: Poors an extremely dark brown almost black.The smallish head, around 1/3 of an inch is a light brown. The head disapated in around a minute, I would've liked it to hang around for a while longer..

Smell: The smell of this beer is easily it's greatest attribute. Sweet, creamy scents are the first obvious smell, followed by dark chocolate and roasted coffee. Delightful. I could spend all day sniffing this beer.

Taste: At first a rich creamy flavor with some hints of chocolate. Coffee flavors appear and begin to dominate the other tastes. Finish is nice and long with plenty of coffee and dark chocolate flavor. The taste is strong, but not as bitter as a lot of stouts. I could see this being a good beer to introduce a person to stouts outside of Guiness.

Mouthfeel: The weakest part of the beer. It lacks the thickness and smoothness that I like in a stout. It's very thin and light. It fails to meet up to the expectations set by the smell.

Drinkability: Oddly enough, even though the mouthfeel wasn't what I wanted, I think it makes this beer much easier to drink. It's not as heavy in my stomach as most stouts and I could see polishing off a sixer with little trouble.

Over all, I was impressed by this beer. I'm probably in the minority, but I've never been a big fan of this brewery's other offerings. With that in mind, I was halfway expecting to dislike this beer. What a pleasant surprise it was to open it up and let that smell hit my nose. This will probably never be one of my favorites, but I will buy it and drink it again.

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Sierra Nevada Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.07 out of 5 based on 3,359 ratings.
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