Experimental Hop IPA | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Experimental Hop IPAExperimental Hop IPA
Very Good
106 Ratings
Experimental Hop IPAExperimental Hop IPA

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Heavy hops, light haziness
The new style in IPAs is to highlight heavy hop aroma without intense bitterness, and this lightly hazy IPA does just that. It features the native-grown FZMR2 hop varietal, known for its mango-forward flavors, as well as HBC598, 438, and NeoMexicanus. The result is a danky, juicy, citrusy IPA with big flavor and aroma and low bitterness.

Added by Bier82 on 01-27-2018

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 106 |  Reviews: 42
Reviews by Apellonious:
Photo of Apellonious
3.79/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can poured into a pint glass, package 010818. Pours a slightly cloudy golden orange, with a two finger fluffy white head. The initial aroma was dank bordering on skunk, then settled into a vegetal pine mixture. The taste is fairly light, a little pine and citrus mixed with some bread notes. Some lemon/citrus notes appear as it warms. Grassy finish, low bitterness. The mouthful is medium light, with a slightly above average amount of carbonation. Overall, it was good, but it seemed like it needed more balance, more bitterness, or more citrus to even it out.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of drdiesel9483
4.12/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look - hazy orangish copper color with a good lasting white head and sticky lacing
Smell - piney citrus mango fruity hops and a good caramel malt backbone
Taste - dank fruity bitterness with the caramel Martiness
Feel - medium body with a medium light carb
Overall - yummy fantastic old meets new beer. Good balanced tradition ipa by Sierra with a great different hop.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is another Sierra Nevada Experimental brew that totally works and deserves attention.

It pours slightly deep yellow with massive head that lingers. The aroma is on the civilized side of pungent. The hopped bitter taste is accompanied by a bit of bite. A very satisfying brew.

Recommended, but will we ever see it?

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Photo of Tiernan
3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Beaver13
3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. Pours hazy golden orange with a big fluffy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is subdued - sweet bready malts and a little fruit and resin.

The flavor is sweet bready malt with tropical fruit and a resiny hop finish. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, a nice IPA.

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Photo of petewheeler
3.92/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of HopsForBrains
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.32/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Canned 01/11/18
Appearance - Pours slightly hazy and slightly burnt orange in color with an off-white, near finger's width head. Broken lines and small spotting make up the lacing.

Smell - Bready, piney notes upfront. Lesser citrus. Hints of peppery spice.

Taste - Follows the nose. Bready malts upfront and throughout with lesser pine and citrus notes. Hints of herbal character. Finish continues with the bready flavor and light, citrusy rind bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation. Slick, easy drinker with a fair, slightly flat finish.

Overall - I have no idea what SN was thinking with this Experimental 12 pack. The hoppy pilsner has been the best of the bunch, by far. This is not a good thing. This one is at least as malty as it is hoppy. WTF?

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Photo of tdm168
3.94/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mempath
4.76/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

jeez...in the nose it where it hits hardest...mellows slightly (as designed) on the tongue and gullet...in one compound two syllable word? #skunkweed delish...nom nom...

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Photo of secondtooth
3.99/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Cloudy golden amber, with a nice off-white head and a little lace.

Aroma: Tropical fruit, always welcomed.

Taste: Fruity hops here, with some floral and pine notes. I get pineapple and grapefruit first and foremost. Pretty good stuff!

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Photo of hreb
3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz can packaged 011118. Poured into a pint glass it produces a ton of off white foam atop a cloudy yellow-to-orange mass. The experimental hop brews are going 4/4 on cloudiness. I'm not getting a ton of aroma -- I guess this beer is nearly 4 months old.

Flavor has some new hop flavors, as you'd hope. Green apple stands out to me, and orange pith. More bitter than fruity or juicy. Clean finish, moderate carbonation, well-controled alcohol content, along with a novel hop character keep this quite drinkable. Very good now, maybe it was great when it was fresher.

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Photo of Bdel34
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of russpowell
3.92/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent amber with +3 fingers of rocky eggshell colored head. Great lacing & head retention

S: Catty, weedy,

T: Grassy, a little tangerine & dryness up front. Dryness, grapefruit peel & grassyness as this warms, a touch of breadyness too. Finishes dry with grapefruit juice, a touch of grassyness & light breadyness

MF: Medium body, restrained carbonation, good balance. Nice balance

A solid IPA that drinks really easy

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Photo of Tjb14
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BKotch
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jsh420
4.17/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Brolo75
3.78/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce can poured into a tulip

A: Pours a slightly hazy orange, amber color with a bright white head, decent head retention, and a good amount of lacing.

A: Very little aroma, subtle aromas of guava, peach skin, and grapefruit peel, slight bready malts in the finish.

T: Same notes as the nose, tropical and citrus but its lacking punch in the flavor, moderate citrus peel-like bitterness, finish is dry with lingering notes of citrus peel and guava.

M: Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation and bitterness, finish is dry.

O: I really enjoyed the beer's complexity and depth however, the hop aromas and flavors are faint. It taste as if Sierra Nevada went easy on the hops as the can is about 5 weeks. Unless the hops faded that quickly I would expect more hop presence.

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Photo of Ahonky
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This one was a grower for me. Upon first whiff and taste, the full-on marijuana blast hit with a wide hand. I found it off-putting...but the more I sipped the bigger sips got, and before long I had put away my three cans. I NEVER DO THAT.

Nice looking beer. Clear, golden and with a pretty good head that left gorgeous lacing.

Insanely crisp with a real unique hop note, something honey-like in there too, dry, pointed and engaging.

Miles better than Torpedo, Tropical Torpedo and Hop Hunter. Left a big impression . Want more.

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Photo of n2185
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Spikester
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Beejay
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: A hazy tangerine orange in color with a light white head.

S: Light pine, with grapefruit and tangerine, with perhaps a bit of fruity sparkling wine in the finish.

T: Tangerine and grapefruit, with light caramel, and perhaps a hint of mellon in the finish. Rather lovely.

M: Medium light, with moderate to aggressive carbonation, and a small bitter cling.

O: Overall a pretty tasty IPA. Fine work.

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Photo of GrandpaGeorg
3.44/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased the 12 can (3x each) sample pack of the Experimental Hop Series. This was tied for my favorite of the four, but given a choice between the top two, I'd probably pick this "second." Nice looking gold color (a bit hazy?) in the glass, with a nice pale yellow head of foam. Not much lacing to speak of, though the citrus/piney hops was present in the nose and at initial taste. I kept looking for the name of the hops varietal, but Sierra Nevada says they're only known by numbers (they're new hybrids). Even so, the flavor was enjoyable and I'd definitely try this again, given a choice. That said, I wouldn't spring for the mixed pack. I don't regret buying it, however, as who can go wrong with experiments that involve beer? ;)

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Photo of bret717
4.04/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look- cloudy golden orange w/ a one finger foamy white head; ample lacing

Smell- pineapple, grapefruit, orange, subtle grainy malt

Taste- pineapple, orange, grapefruit pith, a little herbal and dank; there's also a moderate amount of bitterness at the end that lingers into the finish. All of this rides on top of a grainy, bready malt base.

Feel- medium bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall- Despite claims in the description of this beer of low bitterness, it drinks like a solid west coast IPA with nice citrus notes and a solid bitter kick at the end

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Experimental Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 106 ratings