Experimental Hop Pilsner | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Experimental Hop PilsnerExperimental Hop Pilsner
Very Good
127 Ratings
Experimental Hop PilsnerExperimental Hop Pilsner

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

Style: German Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A new take on the Pilsner style
We got access to two new hops that could change the way we think about adding hop flavor to pilsners. These hops, Nug-033 and Steiner 04190, reflect some of herbal and spicy character of their European predecessors, but with a new twist. Notes of lemongrass and citrus are balanced by a slight honey flavor and a smooth, chamomile-like hop aroma.

Added by Bier82 on 01-27-2018

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 127 |  Reviews: 47
Reviews by Karibourgeois:
Photo of Karibourgeois
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear straw colored pour with a foamy white head. Grainy and spicy aroma with a hint of lemon. Taste is grassy and herbal with a hint of lemon, like the aroma. Mildly bitter and finishes dry.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Apellonious
3.84/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can, packaged 1/8/18, poured into a pint glass. A clear fizzy yellow gold, with a two finger white head that recedes slowly. Initial whiff of dank that burns off, replaced by grains , pine and faint flowers. The taste is bread, mild spice, and maybe some lemon? The mouthfeel is light, but not overly so, with a medium amount or carbonation. The mix works, more so than some other hoppy pilsners I have had that seems to be too citrusy.

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Photo of Tiernan
3.91/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Beaver13
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. Pours slightly hazy straw yellow with a medium frothy white head that goes to a thin film that laces the glass some.

The aroma is sweet straw malt with a little fruit and grassy hops.

The flavor is sweet grainy malts with some fruit and a noble hop finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation.

Overall, a nice pils - a bit on the sweet and fruity side.

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Photo of petewheeler
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Canned 01/09/18

Appearance - Pours clear and bright golden yellow with a white, near finger's width head. Fair retention, resulting in a thin, broken layer of suds and a fair ring around the edge of the glass. A few broken lines and small spotting make up the lacing.

Smell - Grainy, bready malts with a healthy amount of grassy hop notes, adding hints of citrusy, spicy and herbal character.

Taste - Follows the nose. Bready malt backbone that's hit with hop notes of spice, grass, light lemony citrus. Some cereal sweetness emerges mid-taste and powers through to the finish. Bittersweet aftertaste with lingering cereal sweetness and grassy bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Light, firm body with moderate carbonation. Slick, easy drinker with a crisp, refreshing finish.

Overall - Not a bad pilsner, but I fail to see how these experimental hops would make SN rethink they'll add hops to their pilsners when this doesn't taste any different than most other craft pilsners. Hmm.

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Photo of tdm168
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of secondtooth
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Clean golden with a huge white head.

Aroma: Floral and citrus hops. A hint of lemon somehow.

Taste: A tad bitter, this hoppy lager has a nicely light body but plenty of hoppy goodness, with an almost sour lemony hint. Citrus and floral hops dialed up here. Good brew.

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Photo of hreb
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz can dated 010918. Pours pale straw yellow with moderate white foam. Mostly clear, but relatively turbid compared to Sierra Nevada's baseline. Aroma is mild, with the usual grassy pilsner smell mixed with green apple and an unexpected fruity, melony hop aroma. Flavor has some edge to it. There's definitely some alpha on the middle of my tongue. But the flavor is decidedly pilsner, or at least not IPA/IPL. I do pick up the honey/chamomile profile, and it's a really interesting match with this style.

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Photo of Bdel34
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of russpowell
4.21/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent gold with 3+ finers of pearl colored head. Great lacing & god head retention

S: Grassy, soapy, a little bready. Perfumy hops show up once warm

T: Dry, follows the nose, a little lime peel up front. Soapyness, dry breadyness, lemons as well as perfumy hops as this warms, plus a little grassyness. Finishes dry, grassy, crisp

MF: Medium body, crisp carbonation, nice balance

Drinks very a easy, a solid Pilsner, equal to many I enjoyed in Germany

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Photo of Tjb14
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of hophugger
3.4/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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

Photo of BKotch
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of morimech
3.79/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Treyliff
3.69/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75


Pours goldenccolor with a foamy white head.smells herbal and grassy,with a hint of citrus. Tastes of herbal, grassy andcitrus hops,pilsener Malt, crisp finish.medium-light body and carbonation.

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Photo of jsh420
3.59/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Brolo75
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce can poured into a pint glass

A: Pours a pale straw color with lots of carbonation, slight retention and lacing, beer is clear, looks a little watered down.

A: Decent amount of lemongrass, honey, and chamomile tea, picking up a slight notes of spice and herbs, aroma is complex but lacks a aromatic punch.

T: Follows the nose with lemongrass and honey, the chamomile is not as noticeable on the flavor as the aroma, nice kick of spice in the middle, finish is crisp and clean with lingering notes of lemongrass and honey.

M: Light bodied with a decent amount of carbonation, finish is dry, crisp, and clean.

O: Another solid offering from Sierra Nevada, the hops lack some punch, probably wouldn't reach for this again but I wouldn't turn one down if offered.

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Photo of Spikester
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear gold with four fingers of white head. Rings of lace as the head descends.
Smell is noble hops with cracker malts.
Taste is herbal noble hops with cracker malts.
Mouthfeel is light with good carbonation. The finish is lightly bitter and soft.
Overall an easy drinking Pilsner.

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Photo of Beejay
3.84/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy yellow with a small white head.

S: Herbal with lemon flavor and honey. And also a touch of noble hops.

T: Grassy, with some herbal character, and a sweet light honey flavor in the finish. Some light grapefruit, and a touch of stone fruit.

M: Medium light, with fairly aggressive carbonation.

O: Overall an interesting tweek on the style. The honey flavor is perhaps a bit too pronounced for the style, but I do like the interesting twist.

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Photo of GrandpaGeorg
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

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 pick this one. It was really good and the smoothness of the lager style was immediately evident as compared to the others. Nice looking yellow color in the glass, with a nice pale yellow head of foam. Not much lacing to speak of, though the grassy/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. In fact, I hope they market it as a "stand alone," so I don't have to 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 Stoutmaster9
2.2/5  rDev -42.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

One could say ...
Banana Slug juice. Beware.

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Photo of Impetuous
3.39/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Clear golden body with small white head and no lacing.

Flavors are pepper and hay and bitter citrus. Light malt. Effervescent carbonation.

It’s ok.

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Experimental Hop Pilsner from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.81 out of 5 with 127 ratings