Single Hop Amarillo IPA
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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IPA - American
Ranked #3,926
Ranked #24,359
3.86 | pDev: 9.07%
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
Very Good
Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 47 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by BKotch:
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BKotch from Texas

3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nov 23, 2018
More User Reviews:
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Welcome back to my New Sierra Nevada (& Maybe Some Others) Beer Sunday (Week 727)! My mother owns a house in Chico, I scored these at the Friendly Greek Bottle Shop (FGBS) & now, I am anxious to delve deeply into them!

From the CAN: "Family Owned, Operated & Argued Over". Ha!

Oh man, when it comes to SMaSH beers, of which this is at least the latter, I really get excited about Amarillo! It is my favorite color & I can hear George Strait singing whenever I think of Amarillo. It was in the Navy that I really learned to share & like different music. One boom box/tape/CD player per work center & everybody got a turn or it was secured! We would go from both kinds of music (Country AND Western) to hardcore rap to punk to classic rock & back again. I might never have been exposed to Country music otherwise.

I CAN expose you to The CANQuest (tm), my ongoing & now futile attempt to drink, review & rate EVERY CANned beer in existence. It all beCAN ~ 15 years ago in response to my being mocked during a thread of the now-defunct Late Night Beer Advocate (LNBA) & it has never abated. However, it has become a steeper summit to breach than K2, thanks to the craft CANned beer explosion. Only Russ Phillips of the Craft CANs! coffee table book were prescient enough to be at the tip of the sword. I am now laughing last & best.

I was NOT laughing as I Crack!ed open the vent on this beer, however! CANs are serious business & should be treated with the utmost respect, blah, blah, blah, ad nauseum. Who am I kidding? Were it not for Jeff Lebo in nearby York Haven, PA, I might just crush 'em down & send 'em to recycling when I'm through. It is the CANtents, NOT neccesarily the medium, in which my interest lies. Yes, I think that CANs have it ALL OVER bottles, but it is still the beer that is the main attraction.

This beer Glugged out of the vent in stellar fashion, quickly forming three-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, tawny head with excellent retention, refusing to fall & then petulantly leaving a mess of sticky lacing for me to have to clean up! 8=( Color was a gorgeous solid Amber (SRM = > 7, < 9) with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled like citrus air freshener - lemon, grapefruit & orange! Mmm. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, not quite creamy, but definitely big for the style. The taste was like a bag o' oranges! Or spice cake infused with orange zest. (Closer).

A bag or sock of oranges does the trick. Wanna get yer point across & NOT leave a mark? Fill a tube sock with oranges & go to town! Hurts like hell, but no bruises. Just stay away from the organs as rupturing may occur. Beats brass knuckles.

I was really digging this one. I loved the orange citrusiness with its inherent bitterness that was just right. Not too bitter nor too imperceptible, but just right. Baby Bear nodded his head in agreement. It CANtinued to be nicely orange-y throughout with a pleasant bitterness, especially on the finish. Finish was dry & refreshing. I would love to see this more often. YMMV.

Jan 27, 2019
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california_republic from California

4.8/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look: A good example of the big, foamy amber IPA. The liquid portion is slightly hazy and the bubbles are small and plenty.

Smell: A strong whiff of pineapple, grapefruit, and pine with medium to high sweetness. The toastiness from the malt gives it a bit of a caramel aroma. From the scent alone you can immediately tell it's going to be a sculpin-like west coast IPA.

Taste: Okay wow, it's good. Despite being a single hop IPA, the hoppy flavors are very layered with sweet pineapple backed up by sweet yeast, medium toasted malts, all rounded by a hearty amount of herbal bitters.

Feel: A good, crisp feel with small bubbles. Sweet but not sticky, making it very refreshing.

Overall: It's a very solidly good beer but most BA'ers are probably not going to be super impressed by it in a world a few years post-sculpin when every craft brewery on every corner has a citrusy west coast IPA. Sierra Nevada always does a great job balancing their beers, and I think that it's actually an impressive feat for them to get so much flavor out of a single hop. They could easily sell this as a year-round beer without any modification.

Jan 12, 2019
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CTHomer from Connecticut

3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: crystal clear; bronze in color; 1+ finger off white head that receded to a wispy cap; nice lacing;

S: pine;

T: pine from start to finish; a little caramel and lemon as well; mild to moderate bitterness at the end;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish;

O: nice to have Amarillo front and center;

Mar 27, 2019
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tankg from Pennsylvania

3.56/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mar 23, 2019
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Gagnonsux from Texas

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apr 07, 2019
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Consumed back in November 2018. Slacking on the review, normally crank Sierra Nevada's out right away.

Light copper colored pour, great clarity, full inch and beyond of white head with excellent retention to it. The aroma was the oft wore descriptors of pine, orange and grapefruit like hop impacts.

Taste leaned more on the grapefruit, not really what I was expecting from an El Dorado single hop, was hoping for something more unique and discernable. This was pretty similar for better and for worse, to a regular C hop beer. A little hit of a bit of barley to it. I'm guessing it isn't single malt, seems to be at least 2, if not 3 different ones here. El Dorado seems firmly a bittering hop based on this iteration.

While I wouldn't call this one a "miss" it definitely falls below average for a brewery who has consistently been awesome for 4 decades. Its serviceable and good enough (especially at such a nice price point) even if it won't be the beer you tell people they gots ta have.

Feb 09, 2021
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Beaver13 from Colorado

2.62/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12 oz can, canned 9/5/18. Pours hazy orange gold with a big rocky white head that retains well and laces the glass some.

The aroma is subdued - bready malt and catty resiny hops.

The flavor is sweet bready biscuit malt with a little fruit and some resiny hops. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, an OK IPA.

Jan 19, 2019
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Mdog from Minnesota

4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 12oz can:

Appearance: Gold, particles in suspension, huge head.

Smell: Nice grapefruit aroma.

Taste: Old school excellence! Nice sweetness to start, then big grapefruit/citrus kick, and solid bitterness throughout.

Overall: Beer 3 from the hop pack. Amarillo has been one of my favorite hop varieties for years, this one really shines through, old school IPA flavor--big grapefruit throughout. Good stuff!

Nov 04, 2018
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GClarkage from California

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sep 30, 2018
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Mortarforker from Texas

4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Oct 16, 2018
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mushroomcloud from Texas

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz canned 7-31-18
3/4" white head, good retention down to 1/4" and holds. Golden IPA with good clarity and consistent stream of bubbles rising to the keep the head intact.
Oranges, orange blossom, weedy, sweet malt base. Smells classic IPA-ish.
MMM - tastes like a straight forward, old school IPA. Orange, some grapefruit and pine and a generous malt backbone.
Medium body, carbonation is spot on. Just right. Lingering mellow bitterness.
A pleasure to drink, very tasty.

Sep 23, 2018
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jak from North Carolina

3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Oct 13, 2018
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scootercrabb from Illinois

3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nov 04, 2018
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secondtooth from Indiana

3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Cloudy amber, with big white suds and a lovely wall of lace.

Aroma: Great citrus and fruity hops.

Taste: Crisp citrus and floral hops. Tangy bitter finish. Not at all one-dimensional, this is a solid IPA.

Jan 20, 2019
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BirdsandHops from Oregon

3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Oct 14, 2018
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barnzy78 from Illinois

3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz can, PKGD 073118C. Copper colored ale is capped with a tall and frothy off-white head. Interesting aroma hinting at citrus, marijuana, and bready caramel malt. Bitter pine, orange, grapefruit, earthy hops, and a tad of marijuana is balanced out by a malt backbone of toasted grain, caramel malt, and bread crust. Medium resinous body, ample carbonation, bitter and dry finish with pine and zesty citrus lingering. Good IPA. I wasn't crazy over the marijuana flavors but they seemed to go away as it warmed a bit.

Nov 22, 2018
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descobar from Florida

3.72/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

from single hop variety pack. poured into a Spiegelau IPA glass from can packaged 9/05/18
Look: pours a lovely pale golden with a 2" thick frothy off white head with very good retention. this beer is perfectly clear and I observed decent lacing.
Smell: Strong to intense citrusy, melony, resiny hop aromas. I get some spice as well. peppery almost.
Taste: assertive bitterness dominates sweetness and other expected citrusy, fruity elements that I expected, don't appear much.
Feel: medium body, resiny and slightly oily texture, moderately bright carbonation and pronounced astringency hits the palate. Finish is dry with bitterness lingering in the palate for some time.
Overall: this one is a hop bitterness bomb. a bit disappointed with the flavors that didn't materialize. expected more hop derived fruity flavors. the aromas promised better things but flavor fell a bit short. nevertheless, its an enjoyable and probably above average old school US West Coast IPA.

Oct 23, 2018
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mactrail from Washington

3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

Clean, resiny, bitter, twiggy. Pours a clear amber with abundant foam in the Ciney snifter. Prickly carbonation with a light body. Inviting aroma of with light mango and melon with a whiff of orange blossom.

Flavor of green beans and blueberry stems. Strongly flavored. This is definitely the most bitter of the the other three IPAs in the hop pack. Not very drinkable after a few sips. From the 12 oz can.

Nov 20, 2018
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IronLover from Pennsylvania

4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Golden orange in color with perfect clarity. Poured with a moderate, sticky, soapy, bright white foam with excellent retention. Aromas of earthy, mild spices and sharp, fresh, citrus with a light dankness and boozy notes. Solid, medium malt aromas. Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Light, creamy smoothness with the soft carbonation up front and pleasant warmth toward the end. Medium high hop flavors, mellow spicy hops with a light dank flavor beneath – similar to aroma. Medium malt flavors from start to finish with light caramel and bready notes. Medium bitterness through the middle followed by familiar spiciness and over-ripe citrus notes. Finished with pleasant light bitterness with spicy and malty notes. A great showcase of Amarillo hops on a classic SN malty canvas. Great look, pleasant feel, interesting flavors and an easy finish.

Sep 12, 2018
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krome from Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sep 20, 2018
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Wiffler27 from North Carolina

4.02/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a golden amber with a thick head

smell is nice, has a slight combo of fruity spice

ever since i homebrewed an IPA with too much amarillo i know that flavor too well. not a bad hop but i don't love it by itself. has a nice floral flavor that has a tinge of spicy pine.

Sep 19, 2018
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scott2269 from Ohio

3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Oct 14, 2018
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teromous from Virginia

4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the bottom of the can: "PKGD 073118C16:24"

Appearance: There is mild haze with a gold-to-amber body and a creamy textured white head with great retention and lacing. It is a fantastic looking beer in the glass.

Aroma: There are a ton of aromas at work here. There is a strong scent of what smells like the oil that gathers on the outside of a hop bine, a strong mango aroma, and a bunch of garlic and onion scents,

Taste: The flavor closely mirrors the aroma with a strong "raw" hop oil flavor and a deep and earthy mango flavor. It has this slightly minty aftertaste which borders on pine and juniper bush. There is so much going on in the beer, bursting with fresh hop flavor, that it keeps the palate interested at all times.

Mouthfeel: The beer tingles the tongue with hops. It is a very vivacious beer with a lot of character. Drinkability is hampered somewhat due to the aggressiveness of the beer, but it is still enjoyable to drink.

Overall: I thought it was a rather outstanding and impressive beer to drink. It had a lot of character to impart on the drinker and it never pulled any punches. It tasted very fresh and it had a lot to offer. I would definitely drink it again given how delicious and fresh it tasted.

Sep 08, 2018
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ovaltine from Indiana

4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Brilliant golden amber color, nearly clear, and a foamy off-white head. Beautiful beer. Ripe oranges on the nose, there’s also a spicy note, along with malt aromas.

The ripe oranges dominate the taste, it the spicy notes and the subtle malt flavors keep this very nice West Coast-style IPA in check. If SN added this to their lineup, I’d acquire it regularly.

Nov 06, 2018
Single Hop Amarillo IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 47 ratings