Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

1,576 Reviews
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

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

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
There's something about a warm summer day that calls out for a cold glass of great beer, and this classic Czech-style lager is sure to fit the bill. Crisp, golden and refreshing, Summerfest is the perfect choice for soaking up the sunshine. Summerfest is a Czech-style lager featuring a slight malt sweetness, a spicy hop flavor, and the crisp finish you want on a hot summer day.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-17-2001

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Reviews: 1,576 | Ratings: 4,136
Photo of rallison
3.27/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Overall, this was an ok stab at the style. Light body with some bready malts. Not much in the way of hops - this could use a nice dose of fresh hops. Relatively refreshing - good for a hot day I suppose - but otherwise rather uninspired.

Overall, not recommended. Tough going to this after having had a Reality Czeck.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.27/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Well, we are going on the last legs of summer here in the 2nd to last day of August. Cracked my one and only Summerfest for you beach-ball hittin' babes out there.

Summerfest pours a strikingly golden coin color with 3 fingers of voluptuous head, leaving tons of lace behind. Haze and sediment float lightly around the glass.

Aromas of oranges, pears, fresh cut apples, pilsner malts, and fresh cornbread.

Flavor is pretty darn great at the front, with lots of fruit and bread notes, namely pear and sourdough; but towards the finish it just falls flat. Lots of ashy flavors, stale pilsner malts, 3 year old bubble gum pulled from a railing (or what I think that would taste like), metal, and dirt. The first 2 seconds great, the last 8, a big nope.

Feel is crisp and tight, gives off a very nice effervescence. Semi Dry finish.

Overall, the Summerfest seems to promise a lot but fails to deliver in a big way. I wish the finish on this was better, but maybe I just got a severely light-struck bottle :-(

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Photo of FLima
3.27/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden color with a thick bright white head with good retention.
Light, but nice Lager aroma with bread and herbal notes.
Refreshing and crisp flavor, balancing malt sweetness with herbal and spicy hops. Hints of lemon and flowers. Dry aftertaste with a medium bitterness that demands another sip.
Light body with appropriate carbonation.
Mild lager but not boring, no defects whatsoever. Pils for summer volume.
Ap.3,25 Ap.3 Sab.3,25 Sens.3,5 Cj.3,5

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Photo of hyuga
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2002 release. Golden with a big white head that leaves a patchy lace, but doesn't stay for long. Subtle aromas in the nose, some hop aroma that's a bit plant-like and citrus-like. Hop bitterness plays a big role in the flavor, with grain right behind it. Once again, a bit plant-like with citrus. Smoothness in the mouthfeel is interrupted by the hops. I didn't find this as refreshingly satisfying as this type of lager should be. Hops take over where they shouldn't. Not too bad, but there are many in this style that I'd put above this one.

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Photo of marc77
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Light gold in hue w/ a sticky, billowy white head. Very bubbly and effervescent. Soft, yet spicy, green chlorophyll - like Hallertauer hop nose. Not much else there in aroma. The hop bitterness is mild, and a subtle floral noble hop flavor is there as well. Malt flavors are light and are comprised of non - descript graininess. Although there aren't any outstanding flavors for this brew, it's certainly a thirst quencher. A bit more hop bitterness and flavor as well as malt backbone would've made this an excellent pils. Good drinkability, but a bit lacking in flavor.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: On tap in a Guinness 20 oz pint

Appearance: Rich golden beer with a medium white cap which fades to a thick steady film

Smell: VERY clean, crisp, with a touch of lemon and grain

Taste: Again, very crisp, with plain popcorn graininess and sharp grassy hops on the finish

Mouthfeel: Light, crisp, and very refreshing

Drinkability: Medium-high

Conclusion: Meh...I've had much better Czech Pils...there's nothing WRONG with this per's just very plain and honestly pretty boring.

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Photo of LuthersMug
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this beer on a warm spring night after a softball game. The beer poured clear and golden with crisp carbonation bubbling up. A nice crisp head lasted for the first few minutes and then disappeared. Very little aroma coming from the beer. The beer was crisp with slightly spicy hops. A decent beer for my palate.

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Photo of DiabolikDUB
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from Bottle into Pint Glass.

Pours a crystal clear straw color with a good finger of bubbly foam that quickly dissolves and leave a fine ring around the glass. The aroma has sweet nutty malts and some earthy, grassy hops. The flavor is sweet caramel malt upfront that is supported with some bitter hops towards the end. Its a light bodied beer with lots of carbonation. Summerfest is a very easy drinking beer but I'm still trying to work into the lager thing so I probably won't be grabbing more of this soon.

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Photo of rdilauro
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I am always looking for that one 'summer' beer that I will enjoy the entire season. This one poured light many other light beers, very light in color, small but bright white head. There was no pronounced aroma, but I did detect a bit of citrus, more lemony or lime.

The initial taste was crisp and clean. Hops were present but I think only to make sure your palate is alive and kicking. The finish was quite, as I would expect from a summer light beer and it did have a slight hint of lemon.. Nothing like a shandy, but it gave you a refreshing finish.

Follow on sips were basically the same. Clean, Crisp and Light

I will continue my search for my summer beer

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Photo of Yesac
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear applejuice yellow. No head.

Bitter zesty smell

Taste is sweet grainy/malty, and could use more hops in my opinion. Slight spice and carbonation.

This is a great session beer, good mouthfeel. Crisp stuff, but I'd rather have another lager over this.

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

12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Clear gold, little head initially, slight ring persisting.

S: Pine and floral, more or less like other pilsners.

T: Like a middle of the road pilsner. Nothing too sharp or lingering.

M: Light, comes and goes pretty quick.

O: Keeping in perspective its purpose, it's just fine. Not necessarily a memorable experience but good for outdoor hot weather when heavier stuff won't do.

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Photo of gpatt55
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap @ Philly West

Pours a macrolager-like yellow/green straw color with a thin sudsy head. Nose of straw and light citrus hops. Richer flavor than the color would suggest, nicely malty, medium bodied lager. Front porch beer, refreshing with good flavor. Nothing earthshattering here but a perfectly good summer session beer.

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Photo of smythie86
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A bright golden beer, the color is very light. It really has hardly any smell. There is more of a kick than I was expecting, but it leaves a pleasant aftertaste. This is a summer beer, so it is made to be refreshing, and it was quite refreshing.

This is a good beer, I would get it for a hot day as it is better than other similar summer beers I have had.

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Photo of Jablonski
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a clear bright golden yellow color with a small head. There is no lacing to note on the glass. A malty sweetness dominates the smell. I can also pick up some orange, grapefruit, and some herbal notes in the background. The Summerfest Lager tastes similar to the smell, except the citrus notes I picked up seem to be more like lemons. There is also a slight bitterness to the beer, but not too strong. The body of the beer is nice, but the carbonation is too much--almost makes the beer unpleasant. Overall it's a decent brew from Sierra Nevada. There was just something a little off in the aftertaste of this beer. It was nice to try, but it won't make it into the rotation.

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

Pours a clear straw with a whipped white head that reaches two inches. Poor retention and spotty lacing, even with a newly cleaned glass.

Aroma is very thin, some bready malts a touch of grassy hops coupled with grain. Nothing unpleasant but nothing much here either.

Taste is very grainy and of grain husks, some sweet corn starts to trickle in but the hops arrive just in time to save the flavor from becoming too sweet and add a nice grassy feel. Bitterness is light and dries with a touch of soap. Aftertaste ends as it began with a raw, grainy taste.

Lightly soapy and crisp ending with a nice light body. Carbonation I felt was under developed.

Ho-hum at least it's better than a macro lager, nothing offensive, well balanced but for a craft lager is very raw and you can taste the adjunct grain in places. Hop character and feel are redeeming qualities.

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Photo of Wegbier
3.24/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

a pretty white head that stays fluffy all the way down leaving some lacing, a pale to golden color with lots of lively bubbles.

s- i detect so little smell from this beer it saddens me. Very light note of floral hops.

t- light crisp clean floral hop pilsner, I dont feel like there is much going on.

m- thin and clean, i dont know what else to say for this one

d- very drinkable, this is a session beer for a hot day by all means.

I cant find a freshness date on the bottle and I suspect that to be a possible culprit for a fine pilsner with quality ingredients. This reminds me more of a typical North German pilsner than anything czech but that might be my own subjectivity.

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Photo of SteveB24
3.24/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

appearance; straw yellow, lots of evident carbonation in the beer, thick, white head.

smell; smell is actually not to pleasant. grass and yeast

taste; yeast, grain, earthiness, very faint citrus and spice.

mouthfeel; mouthfeel is very nice; very crisp, perfectly dry in the finish, carbonation is high but it suits the flavors and body.

overall; not a drain pour but not a great beer, i think they were going for a unique, complex lager but the flavors just weren't great. not terrible for the summer but i wouldn't buy again.

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Photo of drpimento
3.24/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Not too bad, but a bit too sweet for me. Aroma is grain, grass, crackers. Flavor's similar to nose, more sweet than bitter. Thank goodness sufficient carbonation. Sweet finish.

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Photo of connecticutpoet
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This poured a standard pilsener yellow with a rather large head that dissipated after a few minutes to a ring of lace.

The aroma was of aromatic hops, mostly Saaz, with borderline hints of skunkiness. Not too bad, but not spectacular.

The taste was of bittering hops on the foretaste, with hints of pine and minimal citrus. Possibly coriander as well. It was about average, IMO.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A- Pours a clear, dark yellow with a very thin white head that quickly fades. Nearly no bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass...looks a little plain.

S- Very mild malt scent. Really, not much of anything.

T- Not really a whole lot. I get a nice bit of maltiness in the back of my mouth upon taking a sip, which is nice...but thats really all.

M- Not a whole lot of carbonation at all. Very light.

D- Oh yeah, its drinkable. Because of how light and rather flavorless this is, it goes down real smooth and you don't even blink. I could easily pound back a few of these in a night...if I was into drinking beer like this on the regular.

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Photo of vdread
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Summerfest pours a very pale yellow with ample head.

smell is grainy with saaz hops. not a lot going on here.

the malt is bready, slightly grainy, the hops are light, earthy, spicy, slightly grassy. there isn't much going on here either. i can't help but wonder what redeeming qualities the people at Sierra Nevada see in this beer. it's definitely a step away from their regular line up

mouthfeel med. for the style. well carbonated. leaves a strong bready malt aftertaste.

drinkability ok. though lacking in flavor for the most part, it tastes fresh at least and is easy to drink. this is the type of beer i would give to somebody who doesn't normally drink craft... while i sip a torpedo.

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Photo of Portertime
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I think I have enjoyed past summerfests by Sierra Nevada but if they are chamging the recipe each year like their Celebration Ale I certainly do not like this summer's recipe. It had it chilled in a pint glass. Poured a nice bright, lucid golden color with a decent head and hardly any carbonation. The smell was okay with some some malt sweetness and pilsner notes. The taste was of a typical lager but not much complexity. Reminded me too much of a Corona which turned me off because I certainly don't want to put a lime in my Sierra Nevada. I guess I could do a side by side comparison but I'm just not feeling the macro lager taste. I stick to the pale and Celebration ales.

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Photo of FrankenBeerStein
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out a straw yellow color. It has a definite grain smell to it, as well as a definite note of the hops. Has the familiar pilsner sting to the taste, and this does stay with you like it does most pilsners. For a cross between a pilsner and a lager, it isn't bad though I think I would go with one or the other. Still, for what it is, it's not bad, and something I would drink again.

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Photo of Jayli
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I am generally a fan of Sierra Nevada, and although this is a decent beer - it fell short of my expectations for a Sierra Nevada brew.
The beer poured a pale yellow with an average head. The scent left a bit to be desired as I found it to be rather bland. There was a slight metallic-ness taste to it. Overall mouth feel wasn't bad. This is an ok beer, I certainly wouldn't turn it down...though for 9.00 I wouldn't purchase it myself again.

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Photo of afatty
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours light amber with compact white head that leaves nice lace in a clean glass. Faint hop aroma and smooth mouthfeel. Very light hop flavor and little bitterness from Saaz and Perle hops. Sweet malt flavor is balanced to the hops. Quite good for a pilsner style light lager. Not a favorite style for me and I would stick to the ORIGINAL pilsner if I were going to drink more. It does a good job of quenching thirst which is important in a summer beer. It will not take the Pale Ale's place in my summer line-up.

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Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
3.68 out of 5 based on 4,136 ratings.
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